The Internet: Helpful Ombudsman or Creepy Big Brother?

I was exchanging a few tweets with a colleague of mine the other day. I raised the topic of a new iPhone application I had come across and thought it had some innovative features. Although I was impressed overall, I questioned some practical aspects of the application.

Minutes later, the software publisher was following me on Twitter and responding to my comments, which initially made me a little angry. I felt as though someone had interrupted a conversation I was having to tell me their viewpoint. I really didn’t care how helpful the software publisher was; I cared more that my comments were being watched and preyed upon. Was I out of line to feel this way? After all, the software publisher was responding to public comments on a public forum. Microblogging and blogging by very nature are interactive and inherently invite discussions and opinions from others.

According to a recent New York Times article, in an effort to improve customer service, a certain cable company recently scoured the Web to find blog postings or other offhand online comments and subsequently responded to them. Employees from the cable company were trying to make the blogger understand their position. Even though corporations have the best intentions in mind — at least most of the time — they don’t know how to react to certain comments and complaints.

Jonathan Taylor, a public relations manager at D2 Web Design, runs the social media and marketing division for the company. The famous…



Posted in Opinion|


Powered by WebDesk