Christopher Carfi rants against BzzAgent. I have to admit I’m inclined to agree with him although I don’t want to knock the verve and sincerity of those who are keen BzzAgents.

I think he’s right to pick on the slightly cliquey vocab used on the BzzAgent site as a bit off-putting.

I can’t put my finger on exactly why I don’t like BzzAgents. It could be that it seems to support enthusiasm for enthusiasm’s sake… there’s something contrived about it that puts me off. Call me naive – you won’t be the first – but I wish that businesses would just focus on doing a great job so that word-of-mouth takes care of itself without this kind of programming.

2 thoughts on “Bzzz…

  1. Johnnie Moore

    Ah Tom, a kindred spirit. BzzAgent has got your goat the way Lovemarks got mine.

    I think you get to the nub when you say

    In one instance I’m “talking about something I love,” in another, I’m engaged in what Sartre would call a “project” to specifically influence you around this thing. There’s a difference between talking about something I love, spontaneously, with authentic eagerness and passion, and talking about something I’m specifically motivated to talk about. I say “specifically motivated” because I might be motivated to talk some things for the same reasons Agents are. But the difference is that my motives for talking about those things does not include, “enhancing my status as a BzzAgent,” or, “getting great quotes for my Buzz report.” This kind of secondary motivation can’t help distort conversation and relationships.

    I remain intrigued by the enthusiasm BzzAgent seems to have created – I wonder what it could achieve if directed more, er, authentically.


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