It’s really sad that most online corporations have for many years done business like their offline counterparts. What frustrates me more is when I see a company that once supported open dialogue start to move away from that. Honestly right now I’m fairly angry. Not because some stupid Guru title has been yanked from my name without so much as an email to discuss the matter. What really has me pissed off is the lack of loyalty shown to a long time supporter. I’m not surprised – this is how most everyone online conducts themselves. Especially when someone is being honest and speaking their mind.
What is really funny is all Zone Labs childish reaction did was prove me right. It shows they have become heavy handed in regards to anyone who doesn’t tow the company line. This is a key example of trying to silence anyone who might not make positive comments in regards to their product line. The interesting thing about all this is I wasn’t even bad mouthing any Zone Labs product. I was being brutally honest about the way this company has decided to conduct themselves in relation to long time supporters and their customers.
Once again this is a shining example of Zone Labs not caring about bad public relations. Treating a person who has gone to bat for you many times like garbage that can be thrown away. Normally this isn’t seen in a good light by the general public. Unfortunately this incident won’t get near the press some of their other fiasco’s have over the years. History has shown many times that it takes them several tries to learn from their mistakes.
Truthfully if Zone Labs wants to revoke my useless Team Z title they are more than welcome to do so. No one within the company has show support for the team in years. A great PR and marketing concept has been wasted do to lack of vision. I guess thinking outside of the box isn’t seen as a smart way to do business. The company has shown it’s true colors by not even showing enough respect to email me in regards to this matter. Honestly for years I’ve kept my mouth shut and just avoided their online “help” forum. On April 30, 2007 I finally had enough and expressed my frustration publicly. Not that it did any good. Censorship, heavy handed tactics and canned replies just became the normal way of operating within the forum. If your not willing to follow orders you aren’t welcome.
Zone Labs has made it clear that I am not allowed to speak my mind without repercussions. The company has made it clear that my years of help and support haven’t earned me the right to say what is on my mind. If I’m unwilling to be a puppet I’m not welcome on the team. Granted the concept of team was out the door years ago. At this point I expect my affiliate status will be revoked by them as well. Even though I feel Zone Labs produces some of the best security products on the market. I may have to reevaluate if I can associate myself with a company that isn’t open to criticism and who doesn’t reward loyalty.
At this point I would love to see some support from long time readers and supporters. While this may be Zone Labs way of taking me down a notch. It’s their loss really. I’m sure no one within their corporate structure is smart enough to realize that. Honestly this shouldn’t be about me. It should be about holding companies to a standard of decency and fairness. A standard which has been lacking online and off. Unfortunately no big name site will pick this up and run with it. That is just how things are online. Very few websites have the balls to stand up to the big players who in many cases pay the bills.
It was a good run while it lasted. I’ve had some fun along the way. Got a very nice dinner years ago in Lake Tahoe ( missed winning a prize at Gnomedex do to this). A warm jacket, a t-shirt that no longer fits my expanding waist line and hat that no longer looks good on top of my head. I’ve met some very interesting people do to my “work” in regards to the ZoneAlarm product line. It’s rather sad that things will most likely end on a sour note. But I was straightforward from day one. I said I would always speak my mind. In the beginning I was told I would be free to so without fear of repercussions. Looks as if that has now changed.