Fresh Threads: Facebook's breach and bad business partnerships

  1. Kat Haylock

    Kat Haylock Community Editor Staff Member

    Posts: 404 Likes: 173
    0 |

    Hi UKBFers,

    Welcome to Fresh Threads, our weekly roundup of what's been happening on the forums.

    This week was a bad week for retailer Toys R Us, a worse week for Facebook and, well, a pretty dire show for Uber's venture into self-driving vehicles. On the forums, the UKBF community were less than impressed with Silicon Valley's antics, and we once again witnessed the perils of going into business with a family member.

    Here are my top picks for this week:

    1. Just deleted Facebook

    cjd, General Business

    The scandal around Facebook and Cambridge Analytica was everywhere this week, with a number of whistleblowers accusing the private data mining company of improperly using data to influence political events. Every news outlet covered the story, but The Onion’s ‘Facebook algorithm mortified it has to deliver up so much embarrassing news about own company’ headline was by far my favourite.

    On the forums, cjd had had enough. “I just deleted Facebook, and I’m considering doing the same for LinkedIn. Twitter went years ago,” he said. “It's probably too late, as all my data will be out there in the wild anyway, but I'm sick of American companies abusing or allowing my data to be abused.”

    Gordon – Commercial Finance: I deleted my Facebook some time ago, because it was just an absolutely massive waste of time. I clung on to it for years on the basis that I liked to keep in touch with some people across the world with it, but the minute I found out you could still use Messenger even with a deactivated account, it went. I am so much happier now that I don't have to read all the rubbish that everyone puts on there.

    TexasLarry: The internet is a great place to find knowledge and share ideas, but when it becomes an obsession with how many people 'like' you it's destructive. And when you put your entire life online like so many Facebook users do, then you get what you deserve.

    Welcome back to the physical world - we missed you!

    Caledonian TV: I've had very little to do with Facebook. I've never thought it healthy as a concept, nor much use for legitimate interaction.

    2. Mitigating nuisance or spam calls and emails

    gbcv, General Business

    The company gbcv works for has a good internet presence in their sector, but the side effect of this is that they get a lot of spam or nuisance calls.

    To try and mitigate this, they’ve set up a phone tree system, switched out contact information for a web contact form and been in touch with the big email marketing providers (like Mailchimp) to ask for their email addresses to be put on their global “Do not send” lists.

    Is there anything else they’re missing?

    The Byre: We get around 200 CVs a year, dozens and dozens of spam emails every day (caught by the spam filter), five or six B2B targeted emails every day (mark as spam!) and about as many spam telephone calls a day. We also get five or six rubbish snail-mail letters every day for investment schemes, credit, office supplies and company services.

    It tells me that we are still loved! All that rubbish tells me that we are still being noticed! It's just part of the gig!

    Socio South West: I took over an email account that was being blasted by spam, mainly from non - .com or domains. I put Spam Assasin on our Mail server and within a few weeks and after a few Settings tweaks spam dropped to just an odd email that we can live with.

    3. Payment terms

    Gordon – Commercial Finance, General Business

    If you had an invoice with 28 day payment terms, but the 28th day fell on a Sunday, would you pay the invoice on Friday (26D) or the Monday (29D)? Could paying on the Monday be considered a late payment?

    Paul Norman: Well, technically, yes. Monday would be a late payment. However, I rather suspect that most suppliers would be very content with that! I would tend not to be so precise about it! Most likely, I would have paid it sooner.

    Mark T Jones: I think for most people, 29th would constitute prompt payment. […] Personally, when I was young and cocky I thought it was cool to hold off paying. These days I pay pretty much on receipt of invoice irrespective of terms.

    Namesweb: As a small business owner I've always felt really strongly about payment terms that are offered by retailers, distributors and generally larger businesses, with some forcing 75 days to 90 days to settle up invoices.

    I feel there should be a maximum cap of 30 days in law for any invoice to be settled, in order to make cashflow much easier to manage and forecast for small to medium businesses.

    4. Business partner hiding things

    ukbusinessowner1, General Business

    ukbusinessowner1 recently found out that his 50/50 business partner was involved in another venture and doing external work while he should have been working on their business. His business partner is a sales representative and mostly home-based or on the road, but sales figures have always been mediocre, leading ukbusinessowner1 to suspect he’s just doing the bare minimum to satisfy things.

    It’s going to be the end of the road, the OP says, as there have been other things in the past that have put his trust at an all-time low. It leaves him in a tricky position because he sold his company six months prior to focus on the venture, and the business partner also happens to be his brother-in-law.

    Newchodge: You need to secure the company bank account first, then confront him with the fact that he is in breach of his statutory director's duties and request that he resign and sign over all his shares, otherwise you will commence legal proceedings.

    It is in your vested interests to get formal paid-for legal advice about doing this.

    Gordon-Commercial Finance: Going into business with family seldom seems to have a happy ending!

    The Byre: There is one way and one way only to make a partnership work. Each and every party must be financially separate. If you rent a shop, you are in a partnership with the landlord. He/she provides the shop, you provide the business, the punters provide the money that drives both the business and pays for the building.

    But just splitting 50:50 and hoping for the best ain't a sensible business strategy!

    5. Cookies and GDPR

    Alexisbb, GDPR

    We’ve covered GDPR a lot in recent weeks, but if you’re still keen to keep up with the latest queries, this thread is a fascinating one.

    Have a lovely weekend everyone!