The full text of the book, "The Future of Reputation," has been posted online for free -- and legal -- download. The book, which turns a critical eye on the damage that can be done through gossip and rumor on the Internet, is published by Yale Press and written by Daniel Solove, an authority on information privacy law.
Click here for the chapter-by-chapter PDF downloads. And best of all, they aren't even requiring a cumbersome registration process. Wouldn't that have been perfect? Offer a book about the loss of privacy in the digital age and make it free for those willing to provide a wealth of personal information.
To the credit of Mr. Solove and his publisher, that is not the case. It's a simple mouse click and you get a chapter. Bravo.
I have been called in to assist a number of clients whose reputations have been unfairly and inaccurately tarnished on the Web. The best example is our work with NOKA Chocolate, which faced a scathing criticism of its business, products and owners that swept through the Web in late 2006. At its height, more than 2,000 Web sites had linked to the damaging series of blog posts, prompting hateful calls and e-mails to the small business.
It is a significant and growing challenge. Here's how the book's promotional materials put it:

Teeming with chatrooms, online discussion groups, and blogs, the Internet offers previously unimagined opportunities for personal expression and communication. But there’s a dark side to the story. A trail of information fragments about us is forever preserved on the Internet, instantly available in a Google search. A permanent chronicle of our private lives—often of dubious reliability and sometimes totally false—will follow us wherever we go, accessible to friends, strangers, dates, employers, neighbors, relatives, and anyone else who cares to look. This engrossing book, brimming with amazing examples of gossip, slander, and rumor on the Internet, explores the profound implications of the online collision between free speech and privacy.

Of course, like every challenge, social media technologies also present opportunities for organizations to reach new people and make more meaningful connections than ever before. Even when an organization's reputation is called into question or is dragged through the mud, the opportunity for advancement and progress is there.
I hope you take advantage of this great free offer.