GOLDEN, Colo. (CBS4) – The killing of Cecil the Lion has brought worldwide attention to the famed cat and its accused killer, and now a company based in Golden is also getting unwanted attention.
The lion’s death was traced back to Minnesota dentist Dr. Walter James Palmer whose website reviews for River Bluff Dental was quickly overrun. But it didn’t stop there as people traced River Bluff Dental’s website back to Page 1 Solutions, an Internet marketing company based in Golden.
“People are on a witch hunt when this kind of stuff happens,” said Andrew Wasyluk, Page 1 Solutions Social Media Specialist. “There were probably nine or 10 one-star reviews left for Page 1 within five minutes.”
Wasyluk has been dealing with hundreds of angry emails, messages and even phone calls — some of which are threatening.
“Hectic and frightening,” he said.
CEO Dan Goldstein says Page 1 Solutions initially designed Palmer’s website in 2009 but hasn’t worked with him since 2013.
“We weren’t hosting the site, we weren’t really doing anything,” Goldstein said.
They also had no knowledge of Palmer’s activities outside of his dental practice.
“We don’t condone it, in fact we find what he did with Cecil the Lion reprehensible,” Goldstein said.
Now Goldstein is fighting to save his company’s online reputation, going as far as having his staff respond to each message individually.
“We don’t condone his actions and we would never host a client like that at Page 1,” Wasyluk said.
Additional Information From Page 1 Solutions
“Even though as an Internet marketing company we want to encourage free expression, it’s alarming how certain individuals have used social media to vent their anger at people that had nothing to do with what happened to Cecil,” Goldstein said in a statement. “So much vitriol and nastiness has been directed at us for a business relationship that ended years ago.”