China has just cracked down on social networking sites and “vulgar” material on the internet. The Communist Party released “cultural development guidelines” for it’s 500M+ online users.

Key points:

* “we should strengthen the management of tools such as social newtorking and instant messaging applications” – when will freedom of speech topple the party?

* “crack down on internet pornography and vulgar information”  – yes agree

*”improve positive publicity on hot and hard social issues” – is this pornography??

* and  this one “overly entertaining television”- they highlighted programes that deal with marriagital troubles, match making, talent shows, game shows, variety shows, talk shows and reality programs! Well I agree with reality programs!

Should anyone tame the internet?

Should marketers tame conversations on their brands?

If you take the latest #QantasLuxury Twitter debacle then I’d say Alan Joyce at Qantas may need a good dose of the Communist Party manifesto to help him. Otherwise let things run free and the market will sort things out.

I live in hope that positivity and good people will rise to the surface and overcome negativity & vulgarity.

What does this mean for brand marketers?

For brand marketers, the internet including social networks, provides an amazing opportunity to spread your product claims and core messages. However remember to focus on positive aspects of your brand.

And if it’s negative, then you should listen, learn and modify your brand according to the people.

Many marketers seems to turn a blind eye or crack down in response to negative social sentiment. Are you acting like the Communist Party?