Just some random observations.

  • Don’t assume your competitors are morons.
  • Do assume your competitors are unethical.
  • Skill can be bought; ethics can’t.

From suspect benchmarks and fake reviews (Belkin and Carbonite), to blog-shilling by employees and anonymous FUD sites, to WikiMarketing (“attractive choice as the technology of convergence” doesn’t exactly meet Wikipedia’s NPOV guidelines) and whisper campaigns about a company’s products, its employees, its customers or finances, there are definitely some creepy things that go on in our industry. Unfortunately, a company that lacks either skills or ethics can go out and buy the skills, placing them at a competitive advantage vs. a company that was skilled and ethical to begin with. Then CreepyCo can use their ill-gotten gains to buy some more skills, often wholesale in the form of buying entire companies, and tilt the playing field even further from meritocracy. Where does that that leave our entire industry? Don’t do it, don’t tolerate it at your company, and don’t let others get away with it without being called on it.