Corporate piracy is rampant and ethics in short supply as Telstra attempt hijack the Internet. AOL failed for exactly the same reason. Why do big corporations work so hard to make us hate them? This example is a good starting point for a workshop on customer service, ethics, the Internet, and the smart thinking behind Google's success.
Google takes the long term approach straight out of Japanese corporate planning, something you can do when you are big, rich, and have strong leadership. Telstra lack leadership and everyone appears to take the ultra short term view of what can I do to report a success this month.
The Internet is the backbone of several types of communication. There are protocols defined for the Internet. Some ethics are accepted. Telstra now interferes with on of the protocols to advertise themselves. Hijacking is the common name for the criminal act. Unfortunately there is no law against the specific act of piracy performed by Telstra and we are back to calling it s break of accepted ethics.
60 million customers deserted AOL because AOL performed similar piracy in obscene amounts and AOL customers eventually recognised the fraud plus AOL customers had to put up with millions of Web pages laughing at AOL customers for accepting a third rate service down around the Chinese Internet access before China removed their wholesale censorship.
Telstra is not attempting wholesale censorship, just redirecting people from the normal Internet to a Telstra property for absolutely no other reason than selling advertising. Telstra failed Internet ethics 101. Now tens of millions of Australians will be mislead.
Telstra sit between the Internet and their Internet access customers across broadband, dialup, and handheld portables. When telstra perform that service, they are called an ISP or Internet Service Provider. ISPs are expected to deliver the Internet unmodified. AOL and Telstra broke that rule of ethics. AOL is almost gone.
The current federal government is attempting to replace Telstra with another company but has not in any way tried to stop the replacement from doing exactly the same as Telstra. In fact to make the replacement reach the mythical goals claimed for the new organisation, the new organisation will have to adopt many of the bad practices and ethical breaches displayed by Telstra.
Microsoft and Telstra both tend toward covering a leak with a bandage then adding more bandages as each previous one fails. Microsoft are so addicted to the approach that they add bandages even when nothing is broken. Telstra added a bandage to something that is not broke and appear to be claiming the damage is customer service.
True customer service would include asking the customer in advance if they really want the Telstra equivalent to the Microsoft paperclip. You would then let your customers choose to turn on a beta version of the service, throw up, then switch the rubbish off. Instead Telstra inflict misleading information on their customers (illegal in advertising but not at Telstra) then offer a really painful way for the customer to extract themselves from the slimy swamp of Telstra interference. Most people will not be able to follow the complicated instructions.
Clearly Telstra is learning evil from Microsoft and should be split the same as Microsoft should be split. Splitting Telstra would be many times cheaper than the current federal government's plan to duplicate Telstra. Is there a 900 pound gorilla in your industry?
Elections defeat the purpose of elections
The current federal government's plan to duplicate Telstra shows that long term planning is not part of the government's plan because, to them, winning the next election is more important than doing something useful. If the federal government had good leadership, they would plan long term. Instead they look to the next election and announce grandiose plans that sound like action and do not involve reporting results before the next election.
AGMs and Board elections often produce the same result because everyone focuses on announcing some
success before the next election at the expense of real performance in subsequent years.
What is your industry?
Lets work through examples from your industry. Use the comment form or the contact page to talk about your industry.