In the spring of 2008 Dave Carroll of the group, Sons of Maxwell, was the victim of bad client service from United Airlines in the US. United Airlines employees damaged his $3500 guitar but United refused to compensate him.
Carroll did what many individuals do these days when they come up against bullying conglomerates. He wrote a song describing his experience and posted it to YouTube.
At the time of writing, 3 370 695 people had already viewed the video and the song “United Breaks Guitars” had become an unwelcome jingle for United. It’s quite a catchy melody, you’ll agree.
UPDATE: United contacted Dave and offered compensation. Here is the second video which is much more reconciliatory.
Social Media can be your friend or it can be your enemy.
I have been giving a lot of attention to social media in the last year and I consider myself an “amateur-social-media-specialist-in-training”. “Amateur” because it takes much more than a year to become a professional although every second person who has read something about social media call themselves social media experts these days and “specialist-in-training” because that is what you will remain for a very long time if you start on the social media route – be that for relaxation or for business.
My website has become the centre of a social media network for Polokwane which you can follow on Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Friendfeed and Twitter. Also look at how Absa, Toyota and sports clubs are using our site to their benefit.
It has been quite a journey since April 2008 but I must confess: It was worth all the trouble.
I became friends with people who call themselves names like Snowgoose, I see real experts in action, I have a friend in Kokstad, I listen to experts like Andy Hadfield, Reuben Goldberg, the official Standard Bank Tweep, Myles the Butler, the inimitable Walter Pike, knowledgeable people like Kate Elphik, an all-in artist and Rich Nagle form FNB whose favourite rugby team is Western Province. You can see most of them on my Twitter profile.
I restored contact with old school friends who have left the country and I share in the daily lives of hundreds of other people. I stay informed thanks to modern news organisations.
I drink a toast to social media that has become the tool that an individual can use when his guitar is damaged and I drink a toast to the human beings who make it a valuable communication tool for modern people. And I drink a toast to my friends all over the world – friends I would not have known existed, were it not for social media.
Here’s to my first year in social media.