If Google is the Facts…What is Reality?

According to a NY Times article “Mining the Web for Feelings, not Facts” the latest search technology is all about measuring online opinion and even talks about the eventual possibility of search results being displayed based on these “online opinions”.  Evidently companies are interested in ways to better understand their customer’s sentiment and this software is designed to quantify such sentiment into measurable terms.

So let me get this…companies need sophisticated software to obtain customer feedback?

I guess companies still don’t listen to their employees.  The article cites a story about StubHub that was grateful to the software to identify the customer complaints regarding a delayed Red Sox game and desired ticket refunds.

Are you telling me that none of these people called StubHub’s customer service number?

Don’t get me wrong, I understand that in large organizations important customer opinions and issues can be “lost in translation” between the front lines and the senior management.  However if companies actually believed in their own employees, empowered these people to make decisions and truly engaged their front line and middle management in the management decision making companies could substantially improve customer service as well as their bottom lines.

As for the second use for the software, provide search results based on opinion- that would devastating for our free country and economy.  Many people already make decisions based on public opinion…imagine if all we had was subjective and not objective information?

How many today avoid movies that get bad reviews?  I’ve seen lots of great films that were given bad reviews.  Imagine if all you knew about the film was what the reviewer said.