The topic of what impact the internet has had on modern day businesses came up in discussion during week two of Intro to Digital Communications.
In my opinion, the most interesting impact I have continuously observed is in relation to the concept of reputation monitoring.
Though the internet allows businesses more insight than ever before into the public opinion of their organization and provides them with the means to respond quickly to even the smallest of public grievances—it brings with it the need and expectation for such a quick response.
Also, just as public relations professionals are able to monitor and respond to criticisms swiftly, everyday consumers have the platform to spread their grievances just as swiftly to the global, digital community. If that global, digital community joins forces, the issue can go viral and spiral out of the company’s control very easily.
The ease at which an issue/grievance can go viral seems to put the power out of the hands of the company and into the hands of the consumer. There is a new level of accountability that the public holds modern day businesses and business owners to.
In class I brought up the example of the tragic poaching of the majestic Cecil the Lion by dentist Walter J. Palmer. The digital community has in fact joined forces to hold this man accountable for what the majority of the internet agrees, was a gruesome and unnecessary act.
Just take a look at the reviews on the Walter J Palmer Yelp page to get a feel for the current public opinion of this man. In fact, he is currently nowhere to be found; hiding out somewhere due to various death threats. I would love to see a brave public relations professional attempt to save this dentists’ personal and professional reputation!
Anyone have ideas on how this could possibly be accomplished, or should he just remain off the grid? Tweet me @allymp507 and let me know!
xoxo Newhouse, New Ally 💁