The Rise of Generation Greed?

Is Social Media Generation turning into Generation Greed?

I noticed an interesting phenomenon this pass month that I can not say I relate myself to. It took place a couple of times when Twitter and Gmail were under Denial of Service Attack, and had to shut down their services.

The two companies that we learned to rely on their free services over the years became in a matter of seconds the most disappointing services on the web-sphere.

TechCrunch were the first to announce that both services were down, and you could instantly watch the negative comments starting to accumulate by ungrateful users.

I thought to myself, here we have two great companies that provide two great services for absolutely free, and these users have the audacity to complain?

Have we become so greedy, that we demand more even though what we have is more than we ever wished in such short period of time? Sure, we can always wish for more, but are we really in a position to complain about a service we did not even pay to use?

Personally, I think the Social Media Generation has been damaged by decades of traditional ‘guerrilla’ marketing, that it can no longer distinguish between good service and bad service. We have learned to resent the old days, the days that big corporations would abuse their power to say to us “because we can”. As this new social media industry evolves, we as users need to embrace it, and appreciate the free tools it provides us.

From a Social Media Marketer perspective, this put us (the marketers) in a very tough position. On the one hand, we constantly are thinking how to create remarkable services that will bridge the gap between us and our customers. On the other hand, we have created a generation of users that will turn their back on us when ever we do wrong.

Coming back to my question, is SM generation turning into generation Greed? Unfortunately it is embedded in our genes as human to be greedy, so in that sense the answer is yes. However, I do think that if marketers will keep focusing on building genuine relationships with customers, we might be able to see some more tolerance and understanding when incidents such as Denial of Service Attack take place.

Share you comments, I am curious to read what you have to say.


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  • Steve Early

    Itai – interesting observations. It reminds me of a saying that my grandmother handed down. “You could give that jerk a wagon load of gold and he’d bitch because one of the wheels squeaked.”

    While there probably were a number of aggravated free users who lost contact with their Aunt Ginny, I think some of the more vocal complaints came from organizations that probably use Gmail as part of a Google Apps Premier subscription to run their business. Their accounts are not free ($50/user per year) and come with an uptime guarantee if I’m not mistaken.

  • I think I already like you grandmother, she sounded like a smart woman.

    You are right about the paying customers. They have every right to complain, just like I did with Comcast. However, the comments I read on Techcrunch were by free users (you could tell by reading the content in their comments), who were cutting down Google for their “squeaking” wheels. Oh well, you can not please everyone, but you can certainly learn from it as a marketer.
    Thanks for the comment, Steve.
    By the way, Comcast called us yesterday, and offered free subscription to all the movie channels for three months, plus an $80 deduction on our next bill. They get an A+ for customer satisfaction!