Abstract of My Master these – 2004 – Université Jean Monnet – Saint-Étienne
Communication about a company is an ensemble which corresponds to all communications concerning a company.
This includes communications emanating from within the enterprise itself, as well as from outside the company. The latter is in process of development, in particular thanks to internet : today, throught this media, consumers can compare products and exchange their opinions on a particular product.It is a modern form of consumerism, which was born in the USA in the XIXth century.
The United States is the first country to know the consumer society, with its advantages and problems.It was President Kennedy who proclaimed the consumers’ rights : the right to security, information, choice and quality.
Ralph Nader, a leading American ecologist, popularized the idea of consumer defence. He attacked General Motors who marketed dangerous products. In 1966 he published a satirical book on this subject. In 1971, he founded Public Citizen in order to secure consumers’ rights.
Today, consumers have acquired a real power, where entreprises are concerned. It is especially true with the comments of consumers on the website such as fnac.comor amazon.com : anyone can write their comments on cultural or technical products, and anyone can see the comments on the website.
Amazon is the first to have the idea of allowing consumers to comment on a product.At the beginning, all websites opened forums and live discussions.But this gave rise to a lot of useless discussions and often gratuitously insulting comments.
Amazon decided to allow consumers to comment on products, but not on live. Amazon releases only comments that are useful and not disrespectful.
Today, this method has become a model for a lot of websites.
Finally, this goes further than consumerism, since those who express their opinion generally have no intention of attacking the enterprises.