News / USA

Will the Internet Change Basic Business Behavior?

Some say it will force more openness and customer dialogue

Multimedia

Audio
Ted Landphair

Much has been written about the profoundly negative effect that the Internet has had on the newspaper business.

So many readers have switched to the Web for information that sales of the printed papers — and advertising revenue that brings in the money to publish them — have plummeted.

Last year alone, 105 U.S. newspapers went out of business, and 10,000 newspaper jobs were lost. So the Internet has not been a blessing for a lot of newspaper, magazine, and book publishers.

Does the Internet make companies change the way they do business? Not directly, but those that don't become more transparent and accessible will likely be thumped by those that do.
Does the Internet make companies change the way they do business? Not directly, but those that don't become more transparent and accessible will likely be thumped by those that do.

But what about other businesses?

According to the latest study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project and researchers at Elon University in North Carolina, the Internet is making a lot of them more efficient and more responsive to their customers.

Janna Anderson, who directs Elon's Imagining the Internet Center, said about 900 top business

Internet users surveyed believe the net will force even the most resistant companies to tune into customer demands if they want to keep up.

Anderson noted that many said there is too much pressure from the public in today's age of collective intelligence and transparency for institutions to be able to continue to cling to 20th-century forms.

The Rocky Mountain News had been published for 150 years before going out of business last year. The Internet, which stole away many of the print edition's readers, helped kill it.
The Rocky Mountain News had been published for 150 years before going out of business last year. The Internet, which stole away many of the print edition's readers, helped kill it.

One person surveyed — Dylan Tweney, senior editor of Wired magazine — says that since many executives were trained in the days when companies could get away with being haughty and secretive, change is happening gradually.

But 10 years from now, he says, companies' customers will know far more about the companies than the companies do themselves.

Others are skeptical. Susan Crawford, a former member of President Obama's National Economic Council, told the researchers, no matter how much information is online and available,there will still be some small circle of men [she did specify men] who will be hanging on to all the levers. . .

Has free and easy communication on the Web changed the way companies do business? Consider the open dialogue that auto companies like Toyota have had with their customers when problems occur and recalls are necessary.
Has free and easy communication on the Web changed the way companies do business? Consider the open dialogue that auto companies like Toyota have had with their customers when problems occur and recalls are necessary.

They'll give lip service to openness, and they will commit to better customer service.

But they won't actually change their ways.  

But Crawford added, ask me again in 2020.

You May Like

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Analysis: Occupy Central Not Exactly Hong Kong’s Tiananmen

VOA's former Hong Kong, Beijing correspondent compares and contrasts 1989 Tiananmen Square protest with what is now happening in Hong Kong More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid