| Winning Business by Blackmail|
This is a true story.
In 1989 I was working on a project in rural India, and sought the help of a
local newspaper (I advertised our service) to spread word. I was an outsider to
the town (Town of Sirsi) and I had selected this newspaper based on a recommendation from a
relative. Our advertisement ran everyday for a week and generated a great
response for us, so I renewed the campaign.
What I didn't know was of a great rivalry between this newspaper and yet another
one operating in the same town. One day I was shocked to find our
advertisement in this other newspaper as well. It was much bigger advertisement. I investigated if they really
were owned by the same owner, and why he was generous to me by placing bigger
advertisements than what I had paid for.
No, the two were really fierce competitors, and the fact that one of
them had garnered the new advertising revenue had not gone well in the other
camp. I was amazed by the genius of the editor, in attracting our attention and
funding. But I was angry at him, because I thought a newspaper spreading our message
(disguised as advertisement) without our consent, was not appropriate.
"What if you advertise in the newspaper that my company is closing
down?" -- I took objection.
They pacified me. "Look Sir, this is a small town and both publications
deserve your patronage." In reality, however, they had blackmailed
me, in paying for the advertisements.
Point to ponder:
It is illegal to defame a company or person by spreading a damaging
news/advertising message; but is it OK to spread positive message supporting a
company without their consent? This is just like Klu-Klux-Klan holding a fund
raiser for Red Cross (or for Augusta
Nationals) isn't it?
I mean, can you tell someone not to support you?
|(Comments Disabled for Now. Sorry!)||First Written: Friday, June 20, 2003|
Last Modified: 6/20/2003