Google, Bing and Yahoo are profiting from the BP oil spill as the besieged company fights to polish its oil stained image. Enter "oil spill, or “oil spill claims” as a search query and BP appears as the number one listing. BP is distributing its oil wealth to search engines as the company’s stock price goes through the floor, threatening its future although it has billions stashed away. BP is also taking heat from U.S. politicians who are criticizing the business for paying huge stock dividends when businesses displaced by the disaster wait for damage claims. Meanwhile, the oil spill within the Gulf of Mexico 2010 added up to as much as 125 million gallons and counting on day 52 of the disaster.
Article Source: BP buys top oil spill search listings as BP stock price plummets
Will money buy love for BP?
Web users browsing for oil spill updates are in BP’s PR crosshairs. BP, fighting off bad press and political pressure, is trying to control details about the disaster by paying search engine companies to show up at the top of the list for queries like “oil spill and “oil spill claims”. The sponsored links take you to a special BP Web page featuring the news updates, photos and videos telling a story about the oil spill disaster and cleanup that BP wants individuals to hear. What's missing from the BP site is the oil spill live feed that shows a raging gusher of crude overwhelming the oil spill cap.
BP stock price plummets
Search engine manipulation about the oil spill has yet to affect the free-fall of BP’s stock price. In London trading, U.S. political pressure on BP for its failure to contain the oil spill disaster drove BP stock to its lowest price in seven years. BP stock is widely held by British pension funds and investors there are angered over the insistence of U.S. lawmakers that BP suspend dividends until the oil spill is cleaned up. The Associated Press reports that when asked if BP should cut its dividends to shareholders House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, "I think it is appropriate for BP to be paying businesses within the Gulf. ... They have a responsibility under the law to pay these damages. They made $17 billion last year. Maybe individuals who receive dividends have deeper pockets.”House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told the Associated Press that BP should take responsibility under the law to pay damages before paying dividends to individuals with deep pockets.
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