The Internet Preserves Your Shame Like A Fly In Amber

Here is another slide from my recent powerpoint where I tried to convince a room full of marketing guys why you should tell the truth. This fly is your company’s shameful behavior. Around it is amber. The amber is the internet. If you mess up and it gets posted online, it will be preserved online forever. Forever! For all time. Just like in Jurassic Park, in the future, a blogger or a customer can come across this chunk of DNA of your shameful behavior and make it into a new monster. If the scientists on Jurassic Park island were playing God, then Google is God, and slave to anyone with an internet connection.


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  1. zentex says:

    Ben: did you get a bunch of blank stares?

    Marketing Droids are so clueless.

  2. elijah_dukes_mayonnaise says:

    The best way to convince a room full of marketing guys to do anything is a lapdance. Perhaps you should try that next time.

  3. Parting says:

    You can say the same thing to anyone that uses Facebook…

  4. ironchef says:

    But the Internet is a series of tubes.


  5. Parting says:

    @elijah_dukes_mayonnaise: In this case, take a video, and post it on YouTube. Then they’ll get the message.

  6. ohiomensch says:


    I still have things from the 80’s (a not so flattering argument that I had with a convention organizer noted in their group newsletter that paints me as a bit of a lunatic) that if I google my name come up on a search. I would rather it not be accessible to the public so that any future employer might happen across it and draw the wrong conclusions.

  7. Scuba Steve says:

    Customers have the collective memory of a goldfish, and if they don’t, you can always market your product to someone that does.

  8. BugMeNot2 says:

    So we can clone shame and start a themepark? Better get to work on that virtual fence.

  9. Sherryness says:

    Don’t forget – Not just archived information, but archived incarnations of websites as they once were. Thus something they put on their OWN site that turns out to be a bad idea can haunt them, even after they take it down.

  10. Buran says:

    @Scuba Steve: Not so true anymore.

  11. brent_w says:

    @zentex: What really gets me, is that when
    you run into an exceptionaly clueless fratguy or ditzy girl on a
    college campus … more than half of the time they turn out to be
    studying in ‘marketing’.

  12. Trai_Dep says:

    That’s why I did all my giraffe porn whilst an adolescent under my screen name, Clive Bundsdrümer. I’m safe & secure since no one will figure out that I and Clive are actually the same person!

    Oh. Wait…

  13. sleze69 says:

    Well Ben, what was the common response? Do they get it or do they look confused?

  14. Trai_Dep says:

    Damn Consumerist and its lack of an Edit button!!

  15. FLConsumer says:

    @brent_w: Don’t forget mass-comm as well!

  16. It’s even better if you’re like me, and you’re the ONLY PERSON IN THE WHOLE WORLD with your name. At least according to Google. (I have very, very “normal” first and last names, but I guess the combination is somehow unique. Lucky me.)

    Stuff I wrote 10 years ago, at the age of 13, comes up when I’m Googled. Not good.

  17. Chris Walters says:

    @PoopsieDoodle: That’s true, I have known, like, ten or fifteen Poopsies over the course of my life, and grew up next to a family of Doodles.

  18. macinjosh says:

    @PoopsieDoodle: Really, I know several Poopsie Doodles.

  19. crapple says:
  20. macinjosh says:

    gahhhhhh, i should have reloaded before posting

  21. crapple says:

    @zentex: I repres…I mean resent that remark.

    It’s hard at times, ethically, to be a smart consumer and then spend my days creating promotions and the like….but then I just remember how much my cynical-and-hateful-self enjoys getting my vengeance on the jackasses I encounter when not on the clock.

  22. alejo699 says:

    Lying is much harder to get away with these days. Just ask Hilary!

  23. magic8ball says:

    @Scuba Steve: Even goldfish can be taught to do simple tricks … and customers have learned to google before they buy.

  24. chiieddy says:

    @elijah_dukes_mayonnaise: Lapdance and beer.

  25. chiieddy says:

    @Scuba Steve: Example. Do a Google Search on Famous Dave’s, Saugus, MA. What comes up before their Google Map info?

    Note: Location has gone out of business. :)

  26. Ben Popken says:

    @sleze69: I got lots of laughs and people were engaged and I got lots of kudos afterwards. Dunno whether it will change anyone’s behavior though.

  27. Pasketti says:

    @PoopsieDoodle: It’s even better if you’re like ME. I have the same name as a Famous Person, so I get lost in the google chaff.

  28. @chiieddy: what’s the rest of the story? google cache only got the first blog post, and it appears that he managed to fubar his wordpress setup.

  29. Shark1998 says:

    @alejo699: No No No… can lie all you want…as long as you put the following before anything you say:

    “Let me be clear…”

    …I did not have sex with that woman.
    …I Will not raise taxes.
    …I my tax documents have always been available from the Clinton Library

    etc, etc.