Friday, December 02, 2005

Adam Curry's Small Crisis

Adam Curry, the godfather of Podcasting, or whatever title he has claimed, can't use Wikipedia. It's true - the man who is somewhat a technologist has trouble with Wikipedia. That's funny because I consider myself a half-Luddite (purposely done so I can think like a consumer, and not get wrapped up in the crap). But, hey, I have no trouble with Wikipedia ...

Oh, wait, that's just an excuse. What has been happening - allegedly - is that Curry has been updating the article on Podcasting in Wikipedia, to give himself a bigger piece of the pie, a greater claim to fame. From stories I have heard, this is not surprising. I have heard that his speaking fee includes first class, open-ended first-class tickets, plus other amenities for tradeshows, and from a colleague that has worked with him, that he expects the star treatment. Editing Wikipedia to give himself more credit is not outside the realm of possibilities. And, for some reason, the blogosphere and online community seems to bring out the egoists and make them even worse.

Now, this is currently just an online crisis, and has yet to cross into the mainstream media. But, unlike Kryptonite, FedEx or Dell, this has bigger implications for Curry. Curry's main domain is in this online realm of bloggers and podcasters and Wikipediers and the main part of the audience that he needs to attract and keep intersted in his products, his content, his character. Yes, Curry is a personality and a character, one that is built upon his MTV persona that lives and, potentially, could die in the blogosphere.

As bloggers know, something can catch on fire quickly within the blogosphere, and crisis communications take on a whole new role, and a whole new sense of urgency. Right now, this story is on the front page of digg, but has yet to make it to Memeorandum. Yet. By the time I wake up, it could be on that page as well. Is the mainstream press going to pick up this story? Not as likely because it's too techy.

So, what are the basic basics of crisis communications? First, admit fault. Second, correct. So, in a way, Curry did the right thing: he admitted fault, and he tried to rectify the situation. But, the other part of crisis is to be truthful and forthright, and, well, his apology seems to be a really, really bad one. Insincere. Fake.

To reiterate, the man that helped in the development of Podcasting is not too good with the Wikipedia technology that he got confused and changed parts of the post - four times - to present Adam Curry as more of the man in podcasting. The apology he is going with is "Wikipedia is too hard to use" - but one that seems hollow.

What should Curry do? Well, I like his idea of a Skype Podcast, arranging for all the people in the Podcast article to discuss the beginning. It is the best way for Curry to clear his name, and close the debate. I know I would listen.

Technorati Tags:








Post a Comment