On Monday, my colleague Rupal Parekh published a terrific piece titled "The Seven Stages of Committing a Social-Media Sin," in which she examined the aftermath of the Kenneth Cole #Cairo tweet controversy. "Each time a brand experiences a social-media blunder," she wrote, "the event blows up and moves through the seven stages" -- as listed in her piece -- "faster and faster before the whole thing vanishes in a puff of smoke." The bad-buzz cycle is shrinking in part because we're all deeply distracted and always ready to move onto the next meme.
But what about the positive-buzz cycle? You may vaguely recall that about a month ago -- a zillion years ago in Twitter Time -- everyone suddenly seemed to be talking about the prospects of Quora, a Q&A site with a trendy social-media component that's made it catnip to the Silicon Valley nerd set and the VCs who love them. It launched in private beta in December 2009 and over the past year attracted some high-profile fans, including tech blogger Robert "Scobleizer" Scoble, who praised it in December -- and then suddenly reconsidered, trashing it in late January.