December Slightware Report – Ho, Ho, Oh-No! Santa’s Naughty Slightware List
December 14, 2010
‘Tis the season for more slightware examples- those grinchy, glitchy instances of rump ‘a dumb dumb usage of technology that damages brands. So what characters are showing up on the naughty list? Here’s a look:
The Ghost of Celebrities Past
Alicia Keys, Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian and other celebs decide to hold the world hostage and “be dead.” They vowed to NOT use social media until people donated $1 Million. (Don’t they know Trick or Tweet is a Halloween shtick?) Anyway, people responded with a resounding, “We don’t’ care!” The public kicked in short of a half-mill, and the celebs needed to leverage a buddy to chip in for the rest. The lesson: If you threaten to withhold your persona or brand, the market might say, “Keep it.”
Crasher, Dancer & Fixin’
Several high profile websites and web companies went down recently. The crashes were followed by some fancy footwork explanations and late nights of fixes. Tumblr went down for an entire day. Not exactly a small problem. Tumblr-powered blogs generate in excess of 500 million page views per month. Internet users in six states lost Internet access when Comcast went down the day before Cyber Monday. Luckily, service was restored shortly after midnight. Many college football fans argue that the bowl system is inherently broken. In an ironic twist of fate the Tostito’s Fiesta Bowl site went down preventing people from buying tickets to the National Championship game. A hacker from Boise, perhaps? Most government web sites in New Jersey went down in late November because of a failed cooling unit that is supposed to keep the servers from overheating. Jersey? Winter? How about opening the door and letting Mother Nature jump in?
Retailers Review and Bed Bath & Beyond experienced Dickensian email problems when they sent email with offers that were too good to be true – because they were not. Review corrected the email with a follow up email. Subject line: “Oops… we made a mistake!” Not to be outdone Bed Bath & Beyond sent an email with this subject line: “Oops – We made a mistake.” Sometimes slight punctuation changes make a world of difference. Well, maybe not.
Little Town of Mayhem
Residents of the town of New Canaan were singing that little ditty about “yellow snow” when a computer at the water department accidentally shut down. The water was declared “discolored, but safe to drink.” In Spartanburg, South Carolina residents were awakened by a late, late night call from the automated tornado warning system. Fortunately or unfortunately, the tornado watch had been lifted hours earlier. The system was not designed for a high enough output and it took hours for the call to be fully delivered. Things are a little brighter in Cincinnati. A glitch in the utility system is causing some streetlights to stay on all day. If that makes you not want to pay taxes or utility bills, dont! In fact 12 large condo associations in Florida have not been sent a water bill in months due to a software glitch. The amount now due: $1 Million. I hope they enjoyed those long hot showers while they lasted.
Be good everyone! Remember he sees you when you’re sleeping, he knows when you’re awake. I’m talking about Facebook’s Privacy Settings. Not Santa.
Kenneth J. Weiss is the author of the book, Slightware – The Next Great Threat to Brands. Download the first chapter for free at www.Slightware.com
Follow him on Twitter @kennethjweiss or connect on Linkedin: linkedin.com/in/kennethjweiss