ADOTAS -Am I the only one who wants to hiss when I see Bank of America TV ads with diverse, “normal people” discussing how BOA makes their lives so much easier? Perhaps I’m jaded because I was working in financial journalism during Wall Street’s big meltdown and got front row seats to the appalling corporate behavior of major financial institutions.
I’m definitely no fan of major banks — when I worked as a teller for Wachovia during college, management tried to groom me to sell products that seemed “kinda peculiar,” as they say in the South. Certainly the Big 3 haven’t ingratiated themselves with the public during the last few years, and the word on the net is the latest WikiLeaks data dump is going to further sour Americans’ opinions.
BOA is rumored to be the chief target, as Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has hinted he’s got 5 gigabytes of damning internal documents. Although publicly the bank is keeping an iron front, in the back office they’re working some serious defensive SEO.
The financial institution has reportedly purchased 439 domain names, most of them insulting references to top brass such as CEO Brian Moynihan, CFO Charles Noski and Chairman of the Board Charles Holliday. For example, Domain Name Wire earlier this week broke that many variations on BrianMoynihanSucks.com are now the property of BOA.
Defensive SEO isn’t a bad move for the bank for other reasons. Earlier this week there was awidely reported story about bank agents wrongly foreclosing a house, changing the locks and removing all the furniture inside, including the ashes of the owner’s late husband. On the business side, Moynihan has been reorganizing the executive deck chairs, promoting old chums from FleetBoston, which was acquired by BOA in 2004, and squeezing out veterans with more than 20 years of time served.
However, the domain-name buying attempt is likely in vain now that the hush-hush job has been made very public — Internet jokesters are having a field day. BrianMoynihanSucks.com may be taken, but Domain Name Wire reports that BrianMoynihanBlows.info is still available. Gawker has tons more — looks like the BOA SEO team has more domains to buy.
Personally, I like “SkankOfAmerica.com.”