• Can a Company Delete Your Tweet? CBS seems thinks so—if it hurts their online reputation.

    It involves a TV star, a broadcast network, a DVR service, and a simple tweet.  Of the one hundred letters sent in the message, it’s probably only seven that got the ire of CBS: “Amazing.”

    That’s what Kaley Cuoco, star of CBS’s hit show “The Big Bang Theory,” called Dish’s Hopper DVR.  The tweet was since deleted.  Kaley Cuoco was paid for his “endorsement” too.  According to CNN’s Money website, “A CBS spokesman said separately that the company did not contact Cuoco ‘at all,’” to delete it.

    Did CBS force the actress to delete it?  Well, Dish thinks so, and even sent out a press release stating their opinion.

    CBS—as are the other major networks—are embroiled in a legal war with Dish’s Hopper DVR service that lets users record shows and automatically skip commercials for primetime network shows, so a tweet from a hit show’s actress praising it is particularly embarrassing.

    But it raises many questions about the lengths a company can take in protecting, repairing and promoting their online reputation.

    Should a company ask you to remove a tweet?

    Does it matter if you were paid to send it?

    Does this hurt CBS more because it seems that they suppressed a star’s message or Dish for paying someone to write about a service?

    Managing a company’s online reputation today is tricky.

    There are many fronts where damage can come from.  Embarrassing tweets, inappropriate Facebook posts, off-color comments from a YouTube video all can potentially damage a brand, a company or an individual.

    Repairing a reputation due to a tweet or other social media source is problematic, as exemplified by CBS’s reaction.  Doing something, such as removing it and hoping no one will notice sometimes is not the best option because it can generate additional press.

    Maybe the best approach is to “do nothing.”  If a problematic tweet is posted, pause, think, try to understand the real damage there is in the leaving the tweet up or removing it, and attempt to bury it with good content.  Removing a tweet can imply guilt, and just make matters worse.

    I guess we’ll never know if CBS deleted Kaley Cuoco tweet, but this issue will come up more and more as social media continues to exert more control over businesses’ online reputations.

    See Related Article: Each Negative Link or Review Loses Thirty Customers or $30,000

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