When Trashing Someone Online Goes Awry

Reputation management firms warn customers that anyone may chose to take revenge on them at any time, however, Lynn Louise Taylor went further than most people in her effort to discredit her ex-husband’s reputation. As reported in the Daily Business Review, Taylor hired a private detective to buy laptops, go to places with public Wi-Fi networks, and then post scathing comments about her ex-husband, an orthopedic surgeon, on review websites. The private detective then tossed the computers into the ocean.

While Lynn Louise Taylor was ordered to pay $335,000 in attorneys’ fees after Dr. Kenneth Warren Taylor filed suit, this was merely compensation for the fees he accrued while trying to link the online reviews to his ex-wife. Unfortunately, revenge reviews by Dr. Warren’s former spouse, such as he infects others with herpes, are still showing up at top of Google’s search result for his name.

The Taylor case was extreme; most people seeking revenge don’t go this far. However, the case illustrates how professionals, business executives and other people in the public eye are vulnerable, Anyone who depends on their online reputation to get clients, patients or a position, should monitor their search results and if they find negative information on the first page of the search results, they should know that other people will find it too.

A reputable management company likeĀ  Reputation.com could have repaired Dr. Taylor’s reputation by generating positive content that highlighted his professional achievements, which would have pushed the negative content further down in the search results, in addition to his seeking legal remedies.