Social media and understanding all sides of the story

The superfast age of social media and hyper-connectivity brings with it an enormous range of benefits. Being able to interact with people instantly, all over the globe, is an innovation that has transformed the world for the better. But as social media expands, we also have to be careful about how it is used.

 

社交媒体的快速兴起及其超级连通性给人们的生活带来诸多益处。这一创新实现了全世界范围内人与人之间的即时互动,让整个人类世界都变得更加美好。然而,随着社交媒体的发展和扩大,我们也应该对如何运用这一创新持谨慎态度。

Richard Branson stern look

I was saddened that some of our customers and crew had an unpleasant experience on a recent Virgin Atlantic flight from London to Shanghai. We have fully investigated this incident and have spoken with all those involved, including fellow customers and the cabin crew present. There was an altercation between two customers on board the flight, a female customer and a male customer who has Parkinson’s disease. The altercation resulted in both individuals becoming upset and distressed. Upon noticing the argument, our cabin crew did their best to resolve the situation for all customers. The passengers were moved apart into separate seats without further interaction or incident.

Before the team was able to fully investigate the incident, one side of the story was already being shared widely online, and is generating headlines in news publications as well as social networks. This has resulted in allegations of racism - I reiterate that Virgin Atlantic and all Virgin companies and people take a zero tolerance approach to racism. We equally take a zero tolerance approach to discrimination against anybody due to a disability (and to all forms of discrimination). Sometimes the consequences of jumping to conclusions can have a significant impact, in this case on crew members who were doing their job and have received an enormous amount of abuse online.

In situations like this it is absolutely critical that the incident is fully investigated before jumping to any conclusions or making any allegations. That is especially true for any leader of a business. Until all sides of the story are gathered, it is not possible to come to a reasoned conclusion.

 

让我感到遗憾的是,在最近一班从伦敦飞往上海的维珍航空的航班上,一些乘客和机组人员的经历并不愉快。我们已就该事件进行了全面调查并与所有相关人员进行对话,其中包括同一航班的乘客和在场机组人员。飞机上的一位女性乘客与一位患有帕金森症的男性乘客曾发生争执,双方最后均一度情绪失控。看到这种情况后,我们的机组人员尽全力控制了局面,以避免影响其他乘客。发生争执的两位乘客被请到分开的座位,从而制止了事件的进一步恶化。

在公司团队对此次事件进行充分调查之前,故事的片段已经在网上广泛地传播开来,而且在各种新闻出版物和社交媒体上都占据了头条。所有这些似乎都在指控公司种族歧视——但我想重申的是,维珍航空、所有维珍子公司和员工,都对种族歧视零容忍。同样,我们对残疾歧视零容忍,对任何形式的歧视都零容忍。

如果我们草率地下结论,有时可能会产生严重的影响,比如此次事件里的几位机组人员,本来履行了自己的职责,在网上却被广为诟病。

在这种情况下,在没有进行充分的调查之前,我们尤其不能轻率地下结论或是做任何判定。这对一个企业的领导人来说尤为重要。当我们了解了故事的全貌之后,才能给出合理的结论。

richard_branson_stern.jpg

I love posting on social media and will continue to do so, and encourage everybody to share, listen and learn from each other online. But before you send a tweet or post a comment, ask yourself if you would be happy to say that to someone face to face. It is a great leveller and may prevent you shooting from the hip and saying something you will later regret. That way, we can all gain a lot more from interacting online in a productive and inclusive way. 

 

我喜欢在社交媒体上发文而且以后还会继续,我也鼓励大家在网上分享、倾听和互相学习。但在你发一条推文或是一条评论之前,请自问和对方面对面时是否也会说同样的话。这样做可以防止因为一时鲁莽而说出一些之后会感到后悔的话。那样的话,我们在网上的互动也就会充满更多正能量,兼收并蓄。

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