Hot on the heels of my last post about my lack of ranty-pants, I'm about to pull on a pair !
Last night VirginMobileAustralia Tweeted this
Pretty nice of them, a generous gesture in a time when so many are going without, living on or below the poverty line. Sure, they get their name out there as well, but all in all, a solid effort to give something to those who are in need.
So I was really pissed off to see this
So many of the comments were snarky, mean spirited and just plain rude.
First of all, not a "Hey, that's awesome. thankyou!" But critical of the gesture at all. Critical of the added exposure this would provide to VirginMobileAustralia.
When did we get to be such a self righteous bunch of arseholes?
What difference does it make if VirginMobileAusralia gets mentioned a few more times (or lets hope several thousand times) on twitter. I'm pretty certain those who are hungry and in need of a meal couldn't care less.
The idea behind these comments ( there were many) is that a company or person should give to society silently, without any fanfare and without expecting any kudos. One commenter very proudly tweets that she volunteers and gives and never mentions it ( anywhere except, you know, twitter) .
Which is lovely for her, in all her holier-than-thou self righteousness. But it doesn't inspire anyone else to join in and volunteer or give. It doesn't invoke a call to action. I'm sure she feels very good about herself but none of her friends know what she does on a Thursday night while she's at the local soup kitchen. For all they know she could be pole-dancing . Just maybe, if she told her friends what she was doing, one or two of them would volunteer as well.
We need big companies to give, to be generous, to extend a helping hand in what ever way they can. We need them to inspire other companies to do the same.
Companies are businesses. They need to make a profit to stay in business. To justify giving something away, there needs to be a return to the business. Better social media exposure is the prize in our media heavy world. So many companies gain this by running giveaways like a holiday, a car, gift vouchers. Every time I go on Facebook or Twitter my newsfeed is guaranteed to have a giveaway posts, all increasing the positive social reach of airlines, cruiselines, phone companies, electrical stores, dog foods manufacturers...
Those giveaway posts are shared, re-shared and re-re-shared by thousands, happily, all hoping that maybe they will be the lucky winner. Nobody is bitching and moaning about the companies ulterior motives. Nobody rants that the company is only giving something away to gain popularity.
Is it just because there is no chance of personal gain by the reader that Virgin's offer has so offended people? It's still a giveaway, just not to them. It's the same amount of social media exposure, but no possible benefit to the angry people.
I know who I think is the scum here. And it isn't Virgin