Home > Internet, Journalism > If you’ve nothing to hide, you’ve nothing to worry about

If you’ve nothing to hide, you’ve nothing to worry about

I was going to entitle this post “When Social Media goes bad”, but decided against it because in this case, Social Media was very much the winner.

A few day’s ago The Guardian invited a London herbal remedy company, Neal’s Yard Remedies, to answer questions from readers, having already had successful discussions about other subjects, such as Fairtrade and food in a series of articles called “You ask, they answer”.

Only in this case, someone didn’t read the script – I urge you to go and read the ensuing comments thread, it’s funny, intelligent and challenging, and unfortunately for the company concerned, fairly unforgiving.

NYR ended up declining the invitation to answer any of the questions raised, much to the disgust of many of the contributors, some of whom are now demanding a follow up, but the best we’ve had so far is a lame article about the PR implications including an interview with Max Clifford.

More interesting is what this says about the power of Social Media, as well as not responding to the questions, many posters noted the company were removing comments from their own website and Facebook pages.

Not only that, but bloggers and tweeters have jumped on the story and it’s already going viral, making the PR situation for the company ever more difficult.

One also wonders whether business and political leaders would act in such a stupid and arrogant way if they had been forced to face this kind of fact-checking by their workers or their customers – would GM be going to the wall today if they had faced closer corporate and public scrutiny in the last decade? 

It’s going to be interesting to see where this one goes…

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