Woke Corporate Slacktivism

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Woke Corporate Slacktivism.png
Woke Corporate Slacktivism.png
Woke Corporate Slacktivism is the idea that corporations should stop trying to maximize shareholder value by meeting their customers needs, but start becoming political/religious organizations that preach their agendas to others. It seems to fail more than it works, because most people are wise enough to recognize that they're insincere. And even those gullible enough to believe otherwise just find some other hypocrisy by the company to feed their need for moral outrage. So their short term allies will always turn on them, and they alienate everyone else.

More

What's with companies losing their minds in order to virtue signaling? They don't seem to get that while they might do some short-term virtue signaling, to the never-satisfied crowd, it won't last long. They'll be hungry for more, or write them off as insincere/committed enough. So they either get more and more extreme, or they come to the realization that they are the rich, that the slacktivists want to eat.

Examples

  • Panera Bread Company - AKA the St. Louis Bread Company, was once a fine eating establishment. Then an SJW became CEO and FUBAR'ed the whole thing by deciding to (1) Create "Pay what you want" stores (2) Failing at it.
  • Nike -
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    Nike decided to get involved in Colin Kaepernick's #KneelToo movement, which gets them some PR attention ($24M in buzz), and a lot of animus/backlash (nearly $4B in stock valuation). It doesn't sound to me like the best way to improve customer perception/brand, but the Nike market is global, and appeals to minorities and the uninformed.
  • NFL - When Kaepernick started his #KneelToo movement (or Trump responded), the NFL could have chosen: (a) the wise path: ignore and say nothing (b) the patriotic path: agree with the President that if they can warn/fine employees for wearing purple shoes, or dancing in the end-zone, then they can certainly tell them to take their protests somewhere else (or else) (c) the diplomatic path: walked the line and say that while they don't endorse BLM and the protests, they won't fire or restrict their employees from making displays. Instead they chose, none of those and went with (d) To perpetuate ignorance of BLM's hypocrisy, to make big displays against the nation and President, then to punish/intimidate/threaten players like Pittsburgh Steelers Villanueva to go along, and they forced him to apologize publicly for it. So much for the NFL's false claim that this was about defense of its players' rights to free speech.
  • Levi Strauss - Because it was such a disaster for other companies that did slacktivism, Levi Strauss (and president Chip Bergh) has decided to stick their noses in Gun Control issue to alienate their employees, investors and customers.
  • Intuit - Intuit makes the bad choice to punish companies for selling products they don't like. It backfires. I worked for Intuit and used their products before -- but if I have a choice, I never ever will again. It is certainly in a private companies purview to choose their customers -- but there's a responsible or douchey way to do it. And it's also within the customers purview to choose the companies they do business with. So the lash gets the backlash.
  • ESPN -
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    ESPN was told by common sense not to politicize sports, that they were just entertaining escapism. They chose to go the other way. Now they're damn near going bankrupt as viewership is way down, advertising is way down, and the trends for the future look way down. So what did we learn?
  • Buffalo Wild Wings - Buffalo Wild Wings has a sort of gun-ban since like 2004 on Corporate owned stores, but individual franchisees get to set their own rules. This issue re-lights up when there's a shooting, robbery, etc., and one of their stores.
  • Academy Awards - Satire Site Babylon-Bee summed up the Academy Awards as, "4-Hour-Long Political Lecture To Be Disguised As Awards Show". Yeah, it's worse than that. The lack of intellectual diversity, the demands of political correctness/conformity have sucked the drama and interest out of what was already a boring idea: industry wonks patting other industry wonks on the ass, over their ability to play make-believe and pretend to be people more important than they are. The results are the smallest audiences in the shows history.
  • 2018.09.12 Willie Nelson - Willie Nelson unwisely tied his brand with a snowflake drunk-driving hacker named Beto O’Rourke. This enraged a bunch of Nelson's fans.
  • 2018.04.22 YETI Coolers - In the wake of Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, YETI Coolers cut off ties to the NRA Foundation (the shooting sports division), but wouldn't say why (coincidentally timed with Delta and REI dropping the NRA). This somewhat dickish move, and the NRA's open letter, lead to backlash amongst shooting enthusiasts, many shooting their coolers for YouTube, and YETI's competitors stepping up their 2A support. Of course WaPo and Snopes "FakeChecked" by taking YETI's damage-control effort claim that they were just ending an old promotional program (that didn't apply to anyone else, they wouldn't fulfill outstanding orders, and doesn't explain the timing or lack of communication or remedy). The "Press" didn't wait for NRA's reply to that, which sounded a lot like: {cough:bullshit!}.
  • 2018.02.28 Dick's Sporting Goods - How to shoot yourself in the dick? Be a Sporting Goods store named Dick's, then alienate a large swath of your customer base and suppliers who are hunters and gun owners, by replacing the Constitution with your hypocritical corporate ethics. This move left a mark, in the short and long term. (To the tune of about $150M or 1.7% of annual revenue, in the first year alone... more to come).
  • 2018.02.22 Enterprise, Hertz, and Avis - After the Parkland, Florida school shooting, Enterprise, Hertz, and Avis rental cars all decided to drop the NRA as a discounted provider. No one I knew with an NRA membership had ever used the service, or knew it existed - so I don't think it'll matter or lead to backlash, because no one cares.
  • 2018.02.17 United & Delta Airlines - In the wake of Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, United and Delta airlines virtue signaled their opposition to the Constitution by removing the NRA's group travel program. Since the programs had only been used a dozen times in the prior year, this was more symbolic than impactful -- and NRA quipped as much back. By chickenshitting and hating together (along with rental car companies Hertz, Enterprise and Avis Budget), they were able to avoid too much backlash against any one company.
  • 2017.09.01 Amazon, Confederacy and Antifa - Bezos doesn't seem to mind selling hate on Amazon. Well, left wing hate. They blocked history and the confederate flag as "too controversial" (a historical event that happened) -- but antifa stuff was sold well after they proved themselves to be a domestic terrorist organization.
  • 2003.03.10 The Dixie Chicks - While on foreign soil (during a London concert), the Texas Country Band's lead singer (Natalie Maines), decided to insult the President (George Bush), "We don't want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas", 9 days before the beginning of the Iraq War. Wrong place, wrong message, wrong timing: a boycott of their brand (magnified by repeated comments) caused them to lose much of their country audience, and many sponsors to avoid them as too hot. They were able to genre jump and still be successful, but their career was seriously damaged by their repeated unwillingness to think before speaking.


Conclusion

I don't see how picking fights you don't need to, will play to your advantage, or add to stockholder value. But SJW's have a chronic need to proselytize. In the mean time, they are never going to satisfy (for long) the other virtue signalers -- so it's a short term gain... while they are irritating a percentage of their long term customers, who have longer term memories (e.g. a long term loss). And this is complaining about the mote in your brothers eye, and ignoring the log in your own just begs for the hypocrisy police to rub your nose in it.