One of the irrefutable rules of reputation management is that, in the absence of any official statement by a company, rumor and conjecture will rule your reputation.
First, Stone undermines Fortune’s credibility with some examples of its previous sensationalistic writing:
Here are some examples of how this works. After mostly positive coverage of Facebook, Fortune finally published an article in April of 2009 titled, “Is Facebook Losing Its Glow?” However, later that year they published, “What Backlash? Facebook Is Growing Like Mad.” Google received similar treatment. In July 2010 Fortune published, “Google, The Search Party Is Over.” Later that year, they published, “Google Continues To Gain Search Marketshare.”
Then, we see his act of defiance:
Twitter is an important company and it’s under scrutiny from journalists—this is exactly how it’s supposed to work. Now it’s our job to prove the reporters wrong so they can write an article later about how we have made dramatic progress.
Lastly, we learn that Twitter is ready to go on the offensive:
For a long time, we refused to hire a communications group and now that we have one, I’m having fun teasing them about this Fortune article but the truth is, we’re long overdue to be knocked down by the press.
From that last statement, I read two subtle statements from Stone.
- We’re sick and tired of the media owning the Twitter story.
- My communications team made me tone-down the language I used in this post, because I really wanted to tell Fortune to kiss my @ss!