Local newspaper reports are damaging my reputation

Judith Thompson  18-08-2021

For those who are unlucky enough to have an unflattering report written about them in a local or national newspaper, the reputational effects can be devastating.

Once a newspaper has published a story about you, if you search for your name, it is likely that the newspaper report will rank somewhere on the first page of the search results. This means that existing or potential employers, family and friends, all have ready access to this information that you would prefer to suppress.

It is possible to write to the newspaper directly and request that the report be removed but unless it is misleading or inaccurate, most newspapers will refuse. Many will not take any action unless you have a court order, compelling them to do so, which can be very expensive and time consuming to obtain.

There is another option however, which is making an application to the search engine operator, such as Google, to delist the newspaper article  from the search results. If the application is successful, when your name is searched, the newspaper report no longer appears in the search results. This is known as the right to be forgotten.

Our expert solicitors can make an application for the right to be forgotten on your behalf, in relation to newspaper articles, or any other unwanted information which is published about you online.

When assessing the application for the right to be forgotten, the search engine operators need to consider whether the content is:

  • irrelevant;
  • outdated; or
  • otherwise inappropriate.

If the content meets any of these criteria, it should be removed.

Living in a community where everyone knows can be difficult at the best of times, but in the age of the internet, anyone can search your name and find out a great deal of information about you. Protecting your reputation is important and we are here to help.

If a local or national newspaper has published stories about you which you would like to bock from a search of your name, contact us today to find out how we can help.

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