It has long been known that on the Internet no one knows you are a dog.
Today, with the widespread adoption of web 2.0 tools and technologies, the rapid dissemination of false and malicious misrepresentation and the attendant fallout can be widespread and instantaneous.
Two episodes this week bring this home for me. One, well-known in the blogosphere, has to do with marketing guru and rabid self-promoter Seth Godin, who felt entitled to write about Twittering, despite the fact that he does not Twitter
AND that in fact someone else Twitters in his stead.
The second episode took place at my workplace, where one young man took it upon himself to create a twitter account in the name of an older colleague. He then, in the name of this older, married man, began a campaign of sending somewhat provocative Twitters to young women throughout the office. A wild buzz ensued, with outrage, disbelief, and then an ongoing game of whodunit when the web-savvy gals figured out the old guy probably wasn’t really behind the offensive texts.
Last night the drama escalated when the old guy’s wife, who was innocently Googling her husband’s name (??) came across one of the offending Twitter posts. She flipped, and after chewing his ass out, the old guy called the boss and the shit hit the fan, sending reverberations bouncing from cubicle to cubicle. This morning, the young whippersnapper has confessed, and apologized to the old guy. All is seemingly back to normal, however, I can’t help but wonder how many similar Twitter dramas are happening across the blogosphere right now…
On the Internet, no one knows you are a dog.