Is the Internet Marketing Always An Ethical Activity?

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Not so long ago, I wrote a series of articles for one of my clients about the ethical hacking. What was my conclusion? Huh, can I get the next question? I heard about Black and White Hat SEO. So, is there such a thing called the Black Hat Marketing? I'm impressed with the overwhelming number of all kinds of standards and initiatives you can stumble upon online while searching for ethical Internet marketing subjects. Yet, what's the use?

You aren't yourself when you're hungry

This is lovely Snicker's ad, but the message isn't a funny one. Just imagine this real-life scenario. You've invested all of your money and energy, but it isn't working. There's an Internet marketer willing to show you how the Dark Side works first-hand. What you're most likely to do? Are you going to reject this indecent proposal? Yet, this Sith Internet Marketer comes back to you with an offer that sounds too good to be true. Compared to what you're expected to invest, you can gain more than you ever dreamed of. Again, what you're going to do? There are some risks. Google may or may not ban your website. Some heartbroken user or customer will post poisonous comments all day long on all forums you've ever heard of. So what? I will survive. The next time I check my bank balance all pain and doubts will be gone with the wind.

Goethe's Faust didn't have a Smartphone

To tell you the truth, I wanted to write about some of the intriguing and inspirational Internet marketers. You know, I was doing my regular research. Yet, there was this self-proclaimed Internet marketing guru. My hat off for all success and achievements. I did my very best, but I just couldn't survive a finger in an eye. I saw his photo next to some Fast and Furious mean machine. OK, so what's the big deal? I'm just a jealous guy. The so-called vanity plate or a more politically correct term - a personalized license plate. OK again, his car, his rules. Whenever I hear the word rule, I can't help myself wondering, is there some fool around paying for all of this vanity luxury?

Is there some other way to prove that you're a successful Internet marketer than buying an expensive car and putting your own name on its plate? Maybe there are jaw droppers who fall for this stuff. I saw your car and I admire you and I don't care what it takes to get here where you are right now. Maybe it's all legit, but is it ethical? At the end of the day, who's left to judge? You look yourself in the mirror, and you know. You did what you have to do, in order to survive. This relativization can be an extremely dangerous thing. Yet, I have to wonder how many unethical Internet marketers suffer the "boomerang effects" in the long run?

So, what can we do about it?

This wasn't a rhetorical question. What can we do about it, for real? I saw some guys, writing pamphlets and heartbreaking appeals for standardization in this field. Yet, can you imagine an Internet marketing ethics committee? The United Marketing Nations? It sounds like a joke. Just like Isaac Asimov you're going to write your own Laws of Robotics version for Internet marketing, and then you're going to wait for a lovely day when your standards become the reality. We have the laws, but we're still waiting for the robots to understand and implement them. We have more than enough standards and ideas, but we're still waiting for the Internet marketers willing to apply them.

This Wild West of Internet Marketing doesn't need a sheriff to ensure law and order. Yet, there are so many scam artist and predators out there. Internet marketing still walks in the mysterious ways. That's the main reason we can't come up with a fully functional rulebook. What's valid today, you can't implement tomorrow. Algorithms are changing more than you can manage to keep a track. Today you're a Black Hat Marketer. Tomorrow you're playing by the rules. It eventually comes down to your own good will and decision to be more or less, completely ethical or unethical in the Internet marketing waters. This is undoubtedly the scariest part. These voluntary things never end up in a good way.

Who will guard the guardians?

For some the land of wonderful opportunities, for others the lawless nightmare. Internet marketing is ethical or unethical as much as you want or decide it to be. As long as we're occupied with the overnight success stories, and we don't patience or desire or both, to check the questionable events, marketers, or concepts; our precious Internet marketing will work as a non-stop El Dorado shop of dreams. There will be some "collateral victims," but who cares for real. If you hear that someone got burned on the road to success, you're going to convince yourself that you're a shiny exception.

Guess, we will have to wait for something really shocking and important to happen. We're talking about the massive damage you can't hide and ignore. One of Internet marketing dreams is going to show its ugly side in all of its glory. These things will make us consider the ethics in this field properly and thoroughly. It's in our nature, obviously. We don't have time for prevention, let's act surprised when we realize how serious the consequences are. Someone will write a book about the most shocking fraud scheme in the history of Internet marketing. We're very likely to see a movie or two. Leonardo DiCaprio may take an advantage of the situation to win the second Oscar. That's about it. We'll restart the program and continue with our Internet marketing business as usual. Tomorrow is a new marketing day.

It's so easy to invent an unethically ethical option, but for some reason, it's almost impossible to prevent it. Why?
#activity #ethical #ethical business #ethical marketing #internet #internet marketing #marketing
  • Interesting read but I always believe that we do have a choice- it may not be an easy choice all of the time but still we have the power to decide before our actions or words.
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