The Online Company Reputation is always affected when negative content appears online.

Igniyte works with varied clients in protecting and pro-actively using social media and the internet to fully optimise their needs and positively affect their online reputations.

A lot of companies are now noticing that it is not just their online reputations that are affected by negative comments online. In a lot of cases, companies can see that their share price takes are taking a drastic hit which not only opens their company up to vulnerability and losses, but it can also be a prolonged issue for investors and shareholders to regain their trust in the company again.

This Is Money posted an article talking about how companies are faced with negative rumours and allegations online and what percentage of them are taking action against these comments online. Earlier in 2014, AIM-quoted Company Quindell suffered £1 billion being wiped off of their value, because of a critical report that was published online by a relatively unknown organisation.

BDO and the Quoted Companies Alliance carried out research that found 44% of small and medium sized firms had experienced allegations or rumours about their company on the internet. 71% of these allegations had been posted on discussion forums, 49% had been posted on blogs and 44% appeared on social media sites.

Two thirds of the firms that received negative allegations or rumours chose to ignore them. 18% responded directly or by a press announcement, 9% sought removal by legal means and 17% took a different course of action.

Those who chose to ignore the allegations, may have thought that by remaining silent on the subject, it would all just go away. In most cases, when a negative allegation or rumour is ignored, it will not simply go away, but will linger or resurface at any given time. A common mistake that companies tend to make when sweeping these rumours under the rug, is that their critics are posting these comments online mainly address an issue or to open up a dialogue from the company and get them to speak on the issues directly.

The failure to respond to the problems or even acknowledge their existence, demonstrates the company’s uninterested attitude towards its customers and shareholders as not being important enough to warrant a response in times of these negative allegations.

Scott Knight of BDO has said: ‘A lot of companies have said they are impacted negatively by stories and it is very difficult to respond.’ Whatever the topic, whether it’s personal or derogatory, it’s important to address as it can affect much more than a company’s online reputation and share prices, it can affect the morale of the staff and prolong the negative impact even further.

Igniyte recommend that when situations like this arise, a company should always make every effort to respond, either directly or publicly, to the allegations or by contacting the website, quoting it’s terms and conditions or citing the UK Defamation Act in order to have it removed completely.

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