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Markus Pirchner

>I had the inside scoop two months ago
Any aspects that go beyond what's already been published by Shel Israel (Naked Conversations) in August 2005: or been referenced here: ?

Debbie Weil


Thanks for the great links. And you're right. Neither Dave nor I had the "real" story first. What is notable, interestingly, is that even the Red Couch guys (Robert and Shel) jumped on the "Kryptonite is clueless" bandwagon before checking out the story directly with the Kryptonite folks. I think there's a cautionary tale in here about "blogging" vs. "journalism."


Debbie - We've all seen too many bloggers shoot from the hip when it comes to posting "stories" about what they perceive is a 'blog no-no.' That wild west mentality is a credibility buster - especially for biz bloggers.

Ted Demopoulos

Very interesting.

I got into biking this year. I bought a new bike to replace the 25 year old dinosaur.

Guess what kind of lock I bought to go with it? Not sure, but I DO know it wasn't a Kryptonite - even though the bike shop recommended it.

Bloglore, true or otherwise, did affect my buying decisions.

Andrew Lark

I still maintain Kryptonite handled his terribly. Any crisis can be mitigated through effective communication. The vacuum of silence will be filled by misrepresentation, drivel and poison (I think Schopenhauer said that).

All the interviews reinforce for me is that as a business they responded well (except it turns out the problem had been flagged years before and they did nothing then). As communicators, they did lousy. If they new about the commentary, but didn't respond, it's pretty much the same as not knowing and not responding. No response is no response.

And for the record, about that time I bought a neat new mountain bike. I needed a lock. The blog coverage specifically caused me not to buy their product. If they had communicated what they are communicating now, I might have done so. To answer the question posed by Kryptonite: "here are millions of blogs, but what are the audiences of these blogs?" - it's me, the bike owner. The interview gets worse, reinforcing further cluelessness about the blogosphere: "We know that lots of teens and college students have blogs and, mainly use them to communicate with friends and family. These are our customers, but are they going to corporate blogs? Not so sure about that."

And then, worse still, they correct the misperception that they only found out about the problem in last year when bloggers started getting into it. Oh no, they knew about it in 1992 - and it would appear they did nothing? That's meant to inspire confidence?

I had the privilege of working around some of the best crisis communicators in my agency days. I once asked why there were so few case studies on this type of thing. I got an interesting response - post crisis, all you want the focus to be on is how the business is moving forward - you don't want to get into the mechanics of the crisis, it just casts further light on your problems. A pretty good idea in my book. Seems like Kryptonite is determined to teach us what not to do pre, during and post crisis.

Donna Tocci

Hi Debbie:
Please don't be sad about being 'scooped'! I think you and I got into a much more detailed discussion over the phone than is reported over on Dave's site! :)

Ted, while I'm sorry you didn't buy a Kryptonite lock based on a communication issue, I am glad you have a lock! Many people don't. Please do use it properly, which is half the battle in defeating thieves! Happy, safe riding!

Andrew has certainly been busy leaving this same post in at least three different places. Please read my response to him over at Dave's site or on his own. In it I suggest rereading my first comment to a question about that article in the early 90s over on Dave's site.

Thanks to everyone who has weighed in here. Debbie is a smart cookie and I look forward to each of her posts because, most times, I learn something from her!

Happy Holidays to you, Debbie, and all of your readers.


The challenge about being part of the blogosphere is deciding whether or not information is accurate as it's too easy to make assumptions like this example.

Business blogging is still very new and some of us long-time bloggers forget that. Companies may be listening to the conversations -- but they may not make the best decision in how to handle a crisis -- not on purpose but rather because there are so few examples to learn from.

This story is an excellent learning tool and it tells us that a company should at least acknowledge that it's aware of the situation and is working to address it as fast a possible as opposed to staying silent while you're figuring things out.

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