by Thomas Wailgum

Season’s Greetings from the Enterprise Software Unplugged Readership to Me: “Author Is Clueless”

Dec 19, 20083 mins
Enterprise Applications

My mother always said that if you can’t say something nice about somebody, then don’t say anything at all. Apparently, readers haven’t met my mother.

Let’s see, while covering enterprise software in 2008—the ERP, CRM, supply chain, and BI beats—I’ve been accused most of surreptitiously working for and/or taking kickbacks from Oracle, SAP and Microsoft at one time or another. (FYI: I’m not.)

In a blog in which I pointed out the hypocrisy in that SAP was telling its own people to stop buying IT software while it was pushing its own software on companies during a catastrophic recession, I was told that I was “clueless,” and that I had “no idea what they are talking about.” (It’s actually “he is” not “they are,” sir, but thanks anyway.)

On that same blog, another reader commented that I “lacked a balanced view point when writing about SAP,” and wondered whether my problem was “just plain jealousy or even worse just plain ignorance.” (Boy, those SAP PR people were out in force!) The anonymous poster encouraged me to find “a job with Oracle and the like.” (What kind of software does “the like” sell, anyway?)

In another blog post, I explained why both Bill Gates and I were saying no to using Facebook. After explaining that this 37-year-old did “get” what Facebook was all about and that I just didn’t want to waste my time with it, I was told: “Saw your age reference and immediately stopped reading. You don’t get it.” (But I do, sir. I really do. I swear!)

When I wrote that it seemed to me that people don’t care enough about what’s going on with SAP and even had some facts to back it up, I was called a “stupid journalist.” I was then asked if I was “crazy.” No, sir, I’m not. (Trying to write something interesting about ERP every day…now that is kinda crazy.)

I explored the critical reasons why China now had some serious supply chain and sourcing problems as well as new competition, and one reader commented: “Sorry not buying much of this article.” (Sir, I wasn’t asking you to buy anything. That’s what Wal-Mart is for.)

I got thrashed for my PowerPoint tips article. Some of the lowlights: “Just another thinly disguised commercial for Microsoft PowerPoint. This kind of garbage just erases what little credibility you have left.” Thanks. Thanks a lot. “Awful, awful, awful! Your advice is good for a primary school teacher trying to entertain 5 year olds.” At least it was helpful to someone? “I typically like the articles, but this is embarrassing. Take this article down, now.” Sorry, sir, we can’t. “As much as I love the articles on CIO, this is easily the worst thing you have ever posted.” That one made my day.

When I dared to inject some humor into the pages of by comparing Oracle’s Larry Ellison to The Simpsons’ Mr. Burns, I was put down by one “Comic Book Guy”: “Worst Article Ever!” he wrote. (Of every nasty comment I received this year, I liked that one the best.)

In another article, I asked CIOs the reasons why their developers acted clueless sometimes. One reader shot back: “One reason developers think CIO’s are clueless –> CIO Magazine.” Another didn’t waste his time: “Without even reading the article the headline was enough for me to realize this is a waste of bandwidth.”

Doesn’t that just fill you with some warm holiday spirit! Happy Holidays to all!