I recently attended this event that was hosted by a certain organization. By all means, the event was a success. But, of course, nothing is perfect; and something can always be pointed out.
The organization’s Facebook page was flooded with well wishes and congratulations following the conclusion of their event. There was no negative feedback.
See the power of the remove button? Dozens of opinions flushed down the drain, with just a few clicks. With this mighty button, it’s as if dozens of people were washed away, never to be heard. It’s like portable Martial Law!
I find this very problematic. As my professor has always said, social media is all about conversations. It’s about continuing a cycle. Deleting feedback; positive or otherwise, means putting an end to this cycle, to this conversation.
Basically, it defeats the purpose of social media. After all, feedback is the primary concern of this channel. That is the reason why social media participants are given such a free rein in the digital world. There are no laws that can contain them, no rules to chain their words on their mouths.
With social media, there is a need to create more feedback to be able to continue the conversation that the organization itself has started.
Personally I think the best possible course that the organization could have taken was to answer each and every negative comment, just as they did for every positive comment. This is both a good marketing and PR tool. In addition with that, they should have offered some sort of statement that addresses those negative feedback.
In effect, many parties were offended when this action was taken, making the organization seem like one the traditional “evil” corporations. If this was the original goal, then one must not use social media at all! One of the reasons for using social media is for transparency, a way to bring the organization closer to its public.
Fortunately, the aforementioned organization did apologize for its deletion of comments.
Hopefully, next time, they will realize the mistake in this before someone else points it out.