There was an interesting little Internet dust-up over the weekend involving an online brokerage, a technical screw-up, a popular cultural blog, and April Fool's Day.
The whole affair points up two things: Technology breaks (no matter how good you think it is) and the Internet can be a snap judgment platform.
Here's the rundown ...
The technical screw-up: One of their vendors gave them a bad data feed that led to some accounts getting millions of dollars in additional "buying power" (leverage to make trades). A few folks apparently made some trades based on that new found borrowing power. (Read Zecco's explanation here)
The popular blog:Consumerist.com
April Fool's Day: A holiday that just happened to be under way at the time of the technical screw-up.
Consumerist put up a post Sunday implying that the problems at Zecco were some sort of bad April Fool's Day prank that the brokerage was playing on its customers. The company apparently took issue with that characterization, because early Monday the post disappeared for a little while then reappeared with an update including a statement from the company. Also, a correction appeared on Consumerist as well.
Hey mistakes, technical and judgmental, happen. We know that first hand (knock wood) and have a Corrections Pageto commemorate them. But the biggest mistake sometimes is not remembering that mistakes happen ... whether it's April Fool's Day or not.