Feeds

The dumb, dumb world of Malcolm Gladwell

A guru for the brain dead

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

The rise and rise of the Vertical Marketing Bureaucrat

I think this owes much to the rise of a new class. The past decade has been incredibly kind to the traditional public sector bureaucrat. But it's also seen the emergence of a kind of "private sector" bureaucrat too - and they have a great deal in common.

Gladwell bores away to a captivated audience

In the public sector, you'll find a new bureaucracy devoted to measurement and monitoring. Health and environment scares provided the justification for this monitoring: from your wheelie bins, to smoking signs in thousand year old Churches, to the all-encompassing ID Card. These naturally need quangos. And the quangos need some purpose in life. So they've adopted a weird parody of commercial language: it's full of "performance targets" and "customer facing" marketing.

Simultaneously, a new class has emerged in the private sector - ironically, echoing traditional public sector rhetoric of "community" and "responsibility" and "environment". Interestingly this class cuts through different business sectors: in brand marketing are big corporations, in advertising and in the media.

You could say these are non-productive jobs in non-productive companies: the skills required to prattle on about "horizontal marketing segmentation" have very little to do with traditional sales skills, or R&D. But what they rely on are the same things the New Bureaucrats rely on: measurement and monitoring.

Add to that the traditional neurosis of Big Brand Marketing Honcho or Media Strategist - who has Bill Hicks' routine about marketing playing on a loop at 4am - for whom Gladwell provides some reassurance.

For want of a snappy description, and because it traverses the public and private sectors in a kind of League of the Clueless, I'll call this new class the vertical marketing bureaucracy, or VMB). These are people whose ambition is to speak at, or at least attend, New Media Conferences. Gladwell is their passport. And because TV and posh paper executives are now essentially part of the same vertical marketing bureaucracy (VMB) too, they're only too happy to report on Gladwell, the Phenomenon.

So there you have it. That's my theory.

Boost IT visibility and business value

Next page: "I'm with Stupid"

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Banking apps: Handy, can grab all your money... and RIDDLED with coding flaws
Yep, that one place you'd hoped you wouldn't find 'em
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
Primetime precrime? Minority Report TV series 'being developed'
I have to know. I have to find out what happened to my life
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?