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Naming Names- Should You?

October 13th, 2010 · 2 Comments

BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front) The crux of  this issue; is it appropriate to publicly expose someone for shameful actions?  What are the ramifications and problems?  Will exposing them teach them the lesson?  Read the story and make the decision for yourself.

Yesterday I was invited to take part in a discussion of ethics in social media by Cathy Brooks on her popular podcast The Social Media Hour Chris Heuer the President of Social Media Club, and Babette Pepaj CEO of Bakespace also joined the program as guests.

Listen to the podcast here: Social Media Hour #77 with Cathy Brooks

Recently the Social Media Club had an “incident” where a local club president went rogue.  You can read the full story as I wrote about it here, including comments from the co-founder of the SMC Kristi Wells.  Chris Heuer talked about that incident during the podcast.

I discussed yesterday’s blog post about the unrepentant LinkedIn spammer I encountered.  Part of the back story is a discussion I had on this subject on a Facebook Group with several other bloggers. I had asked this blogger’s group if I should name this person or not.  The sentiment of the group was to take an educational tone and instruct the person in how they should avoid making the same mistake again.

In the spirit of being fair and honest I sent Gil a note the day before the blog post went live.  I told him that I had thought about naming him in my blog post but had decided not to do it.  I invited him to comment on the blog and promised that I would post his comment.  This is how social media is supposed to work.

So I took that direction in yesterday’s blog post.  But Gil Carlson Spammer decided to comment on the post.  The sad thing is that Gil couldn’t take the time to write a comment on the story.  Not to discuss how he should have gone about it, to grow and learn how to use the new medium.  Instead, Gil decided to drop his Form letter into the comment box of my blog.  I was forced to for the (I believe 3rd time in the history of this blog) edit the comment and remove the link.

In case you’re wondering I’ve decided to add the link to Gil’s website  in this blog but include the keywords “Gil Carlson Spammer”.  This is a Google bomb which will show up when you search for Gil on Google.  If you’d like to join in the fun Google bombing a spammer feel free to copy the link above and post on your blog.

As Chris Heuer put it during the podcast, “Don’t Feed The Trolls” is a great idea.  Too often, they will continue to shamelessly promote themselves and their agenda.  We are often today afraid of publicly criticizing people and organizations for fear of some legal ramification.  “They will sue you” we hear if we are asked about giving an honest review of a former coworker.  At some point in today’s world we need to consider if it’s time to call out people for doing shameful things.  There are several sites that allow you to do some of that anonymously especially for ex-bosses.

Give me 1 Good Reason you should call someone out, or just call them out in the comments below.

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Tags: Dear Mr. Reasonable · Truthful Tuesday

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Cecilia Pineda Feret // Oct 13, 2010 at 11:44 pm

    Wow. Sooooo, some people just DO think they know everything. I love to call those people out, when it’s not more of a hassle to deal with the ramifications of doing so. It usually is, in my life.

    In this case, I LOVE that now I know how to even the score when spammers and others leave their detritus behind and refuse to clean up even when give the opportunity. That Google track technique will get passed along next time I see or hear of a similar situation. Thanks, Chris!

    And you were right, this definitely hits on what I was mentioning about someone else’s post on Facebook asking if people felt more reticent to speak up now that the power of the interwebs makes that voice reverberate through cyberspace with no end in sight! Some people don’t care and resort to invoking their 1st Amendment rights. But somehow, I think they don’t get what the question was.

    IN THIS CASE, you realized the power, you gave him the opportunity, and he worsened the situation but disagreeing with your view of his attempt at “reaching out” via a network online.

    I wonder what the rest of his marketing is like. I’d look him up, but I’d rather not waste the bytes, pixels, and brain cells . . .

  • 2 Chris Kieff // Oct 14, 2010 at 7:17 am

    I agree. The challenge is that you can’t tell when someone is genuine or full of it because the people who are full of it try so hard to sound genuine. Some aren’t very good at it, like Gil but others make it hard to tell.
    Thanks for sharing,

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