Sunday, March 13, 2011

Social Media shows we are an inherently negative species

Page 3 news in The Province today, if you haven't already got an earful off Twitter: Bing tried to get community involvement and raise $100,000 toward disaster relief in Japan by urging people to retweet this: For each retweet @Bing will give $1 to Japan quake victims up to $100K. More ways to #SupportJapan http://binged.it/fEh7iT on Twitter.

The shortened link goes to http://www.microsoft.com/about/corporatecitizenship/en-us/our-actions/in-the-community/disaster-and-humanitarian-response/community-involvement/disaster-response.aspx, and if you actually bothered to go to the link instead of getting caught up in the negative spin around the tweet, you would have seen, highlighted in red, SEVEN ways to donate and help Japan.
IF -- and this is a BIG IF in today's superficial social media world -- the campaign were successful, a lot of attention could have been brought to how people could have donated to help, far beyond a measly $100,000.

But instead, social media once again quickly mobilized a negative spin against anything corporate, this time against everyone's favourite piƱata, Microsoft.

Never mind that Microsoft -- not just "the company", but individual employees -- mobilized millions last year to help various disaster reliefs. For example, "Microsoft and its employees around the world have committed and contributed over $600,000 in cash toward Pakistan Flood Relief. Microsoft matches its US-based employees' charitable contributions up to $12,000 per employee per year, and in the wake of the flooding in Pakistan, Microsoft offices in the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, and our Middle East and Africa Region are matching employees' donations as well".

All this on top of non-disaster community involvement and donations.

Yeah, Microsoft makes a lot of money. But since when is anyone entitled to any freebies?

As for the supposed shameless self-promotion spin on the Twitter initiative, you can spin anything into a negative or into shameless self-promotion. Everyone who jumped on the #f--kyoubing bandwagon got their five seconds of internet soapbox fame, didn't they?

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