Friday, July 04, 2008
Boing Boing: A Lesson in Brand Identity
The Web is one of the most vibrant tools for connectivity, but too often we don't think about what it means to exist online.
In the real world, we monitor what people say about us in a variety of ways: water cooler talk, non-verbal communication and friend networks (among others). Online, we tend to believe that we have the same kinds of control over how people perceive us.
That's not the case as marketing companies are finding out.
A recent study found that 53 percent of companies don't have a plan in place for a "marketing emergency" that happens online.
And no company is immune to it, even Web-natives such as Boing Boing, one of the largest -- and oldest -- blog communities.
The site, which has millions of users, is a collection of interested tidbits compiled by four smart tech folks who get tips from their readers. Last year, some post comments were removed and one year later -- just this week -- the blogosphere went crazy (check out the near 1,500 comments the revelation spawned).
Admittedly, the Boing Boing editors didn't expect such a firestorm -- and as a result, they've spent the past several days trying to work out their policy on removing comments. But it's happening in a very public way.
This is not a bad thing, mind you. Just…unexpected for them.
The lesson: no matter how entrenched you are, one slip-up -- particularly when you're presence online is a large part of your identity -- can create serious headaches.
By Brad at 04:34 PM | Comments (0)