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Every move you make..

Posted by Michael Bloch in online world (Wednesday October 8, 2008 )

Some high fallutin’ execs of a company being helped by the USA government’s Wall Street bailout got their just desserts online yesterday when they were busted for spending a ton of cash on a recent sabbatical.. and my, didn’t word spread fast.

It seems AIG executives toddled off to a luxurious California beach resort for a retreat/meeting/convention/partay – whatever you want to call it, shortly after the insurance giant was rescued by the feds.

I was so infuriated to read about this, I headed out to Digg to bookmark the story – social bookmarking services are a great way of getting this sort of information around. Of course, I wasn’t the first – dozens of others had already done so and judging by the activity and comments, a lot of people were seething with rage.

Sure, these execs may have been stressed and needed a breather, but so do thousands of non-stock holding families who have or are about to lose their homes. They have nowhere to escape to – they have to face this head on, for as long as it takes. So should these executives.

I hate Wall Street. I hate the stock market. Once shareholders and wheelers and dealers get their claws into a company, the “don’t be evil” type mottos become meaningless. Shareholders, for the most part, simply do not care how a company makes money, just that they do.

And to a degree – I hate marketing and marketers. We’re half the problem when we convince people to go into debt for things that they don’t need or perhaps even want. Just in Australia, the average credit card debt for every man, woman and child is around $3,200 according to consumer advocacy group, Choice.

Yet I digress.

I say all this as someone who isn’t being adversely affected by the fallout (yet). In fact, I’m benefiting.. at the moment anyway; due to the Aussie dollar crashing and lowering of interest rates. But the taste of success is a little soured as I know it’s built on a lot of misery for others.

The road ahead is sure going to be interesting both in offline commerce and ecommerce; with predictions that this holiday shopping season will be rather subdued.

Whatever happens, I really hope we see more of this unveiling of fat cat antics that brought us to this day. This is where the online world can be particularly powerful. Reputations deserve to be ruined here. Apologies and reparations must be made. This should not have happened.

Speaking of reputation – pick up some tips on reputation monitoring.


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