Social Media Monitoring – Room101

As talked about at length in a previous posting, the brands / corporations are paying online snooping companies, err… ’social media monitoring’ companies’ to scour the internet for bad words said about them and their products.

Well, you’d think it would be obvious to a company that when they intentionally use restrictive practices in their products, that this will alienate their (potential) consumers. I’ll give you a couple of examples.

  1. Panasonic has restricted their DMR-EH57 HDD/DVD digital video recorder so that it will not play (1) DivX content from certain DVD media, and (2) DVDs I made with Apple’s iMovie from my own camcorder clips! See here for more details.
  2. Apple have prevented their Time Machine software to write to NAS shares. It used to work in OS X 10.5.1 with a one line hack in Terminal to enable ‘unsupported drives’, but now in OS X release 10.5.2 they have disabled this. I wonder why? Could it be because they want you to buy their own backup hardware solution called Time Capsule? See here for more details on Time Capsule. This is really petty, and it’s things like this that really turns me off Apple. But the hackers will get round this petty tweak quickly, I’m sure :)

Anyway, I decided to take a few actions from now on, as a protest to shitty corporations that try these petty tactics.

  1. Any big-ticket items will be painstakingly researched before buying, and if any nasty restrictive practices are found, I will boycott the product, and possibly the company too — i.e. avoiding future purchases from the company until they change their practices. Hastily-made purchases are a bad idea as you only discover their restrictions after it’s too late — i.e. after you’ve bought the item.
  2. I will write a blog entry for any product I hear about like the ones above — to give them the airplay they deserve. This is a benefit to the community, and I have benefited previously from reading useful info that people have taken the trouble to provide.
  3. I will put each of these ‘crap products’ into a blog category called Room101, just to add a bit of humour — after all, you’ve gotta have fun in the process :)
  4. Any social media monitoring company caught wasting my website’s bandwidth by scraping out feedback comments, will be added to my firewall’s ‘ignore list’ — so radian6 is going on the list first to get the ball rolling :)

Basically, the companies know when they’re being assholes, so if they’re interested in ethics at all, or think they have a corporate social responsibility, I’d rather they looked in the mirror at themselves and introspected a bit, than trying to pass the task off to some Social Media Monitoring company to find out that people think they are assholes.

End of rant ;-)

Oh, one more rant: come on Apple, don’t make your company look like an asshole with your restrictive practices. You have some great ideas and products, but some of your restrictive practices really suck! Change or risk being tarred with the same brush as Micro$oft.

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