Sunday, June 10, 2007

Marketing by Parable - He Made His Point

I love folks in the publishing industry for their intelligence and wit. And to that point, did you hear about the CEO of a major house who stole two laptops?

Richard Charkin, Chief Executive of Macmillan Publishers Ltd, went to BookExpo America and stole two computers from Google's booth. What's more, he bragged about it on his blog (

As he pointed out, "...there is no sign saying 'please do not steal the computers'. I confess that a colleague and I simply picked up two computers from the Google stand and waited in close proximity until someone noticed. This took more than an hour.

"Our justification for this appalling piece of criminal behaviour? The owner of the computer had not specifically told us not to steal it. If s/he had, we would not have done so. When s/he asked for its return, we did so. It is exactly what Google expects publishers to expect and accept in respect to intellectual property."

I hear the sounds of cheering from newspaper and book publishers around the world!

The lesson for local businesses? Humor, creativity, and the willingness to react to the moment can provide you a great platform.

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