Having public flame-wars with customers generally isn’t a winning move for a corporation. But doing so in the context of the blog world is a particularly bad idea. The first issue is that almost everyone who regularly reads Anand’s blog will trust him instead of a corporation (Anand is well regarded in the free software community). So it’s not as if accusing Anand of lying will gain anything.
But when a director of the company starts doing this it makes the issue more dramatic and interesting to many people on the net. Now Anand’s side of the story will get even more readers, of course Anand’s side was always going to get more readers than Exetel – I’m sure that Anand’s blog is more popular than that of Steve Waddington. I wouldn’t be surprised if my blog was more popular than Anand’s and now my readers will be following the Exetel saga for the Lulz. I’m sure that I won’t be the last person to comment on this.
The most amazing thing is that Steve Waddington talks about having to pay to take the TIO complaint. So I guess that means I should start complaining whenever I get bad service from an ISP and cost them some money! I should have stayed with Optus and started complaining all the time when they caused me problems!
One thing that Steve and people like him should keep in mind is that members of our community are not only heavy users of the Internet, we generally recommend ISPs to other people, and many of us make money working for ISPs. If you want your ISP to get good reviews and to be able to hire good staff then attacking people like Anand is not the way to go.