Usually, in corporate America, whether you’re in Silicon Valley or outside of it, apologies are required when you screw up. If you screw up in product design, it’s a good idea to tell the public that you’re sorry. If you screw up in terms of distribution system or distribution glitches, it makes all the sense in the world in terms of brand damage repair to issue an apology. So, a lot of people were expecting a heartfelt apology from mobile app darling SnapChat when it was revealed that hackers posted a database that included the phone numbers and user names of around 4.6 million SnapChat users.
In any other situation, this would be quite embarrassing. At the very least, it shows a sloppy coding on the part of SnapChat’s technology team. At the very worst, it shows really bad management and a bad infrastructure for an otherwise hot technology. Regardless of whether you believe SnapChat is really a great technology that can stand on its peak or flash in the band, we can all agree that SnapChat could have been more forthcoming and more emphatic in the apology it issued courtesy of its CEO Evan Spiegel. Alas, such wasn’t the case. Many people thought that SnapChat’s response was kind of toned deaf. If anything, it seems a bit oblivious to the amount of controversy involved. This is, after all, a personally identifying information that people could match phone numbers with user names.
Well, to take the matters to the next level, many PR people are saying that SnapChat pretty much gave the technology community the finger when it refuses to give a full blown apology. Will this help or hurt SnapChat? It’s still too soon to tell. Critics are saying that its CEO needs to grow up because, after all, we’re dealing with a 20 something person, a barely out of college running a company that supposedly turned down a 3 billion offer from Facebook. Regardless of how this spans out, this does, at least in the eyes of critics, show that the company may not have the mature leadership it needs to take it to the next level.