Jennifer Rice at the Brandshift blog making good sense as usual.
What survives unscathed in a massive storm isn’t the huge tree but the flexible grass. A company’s ability and willingness to flex in the grassroots economy, rather than rigidly trying to maintain a fixed brand, will be the one that endures. Yes, there will be bloggers writing about your company. There will be creative souls who decide to make their own commercials for your company. Customers will break your rules and create their own. You will wring your hands in anguish because what’s happening isn’t consistent with your brand strategy. You can either ignore them, sue them… or flex. Like it or not, they’re part of your brand ecology. Join their discussion instead of requiring them to join yours. If you don’t like what they’re saying, rethink your business and give them something better to talk about.
Grass doesn’t try to bend against the wind. Smart sailors plan their routes with the trade winds, not against them. Smart companies don’t fake reality and pretend that they maintain 100% control over their brands.