WonderBranding has a post up decrying the declining state of service on a particular airline (I've never flown that airline, so I'm not going to mention the name - follow the link). The point I wanted to raise is the reach of unintended marketing. What's unintended marketing? It's what people say about your product or service after they use it (both positive and negative).
Word of mouth has always been critical for local businesses (restaurants, for example) - but less relevant for the bigger outfits. The easy spread of communication - most especially personal websites and blogs - has given word of mouth a huge megaphone. Tick off the wrong customer (i.e., one with a decently well read blog) and you could end up with a negative review that has a Google Rank as high as your own website(s).
And that's where we really get to find out which are the smart outfits, and which are the stupid ones. The stupid ones will deploy lawyers to shut the negative word of mouth down. The smart ones will recognize a problem and strive to fix it. This is exactly why I have RSS searches for the name of my company (Cincom), my name, and the name of the products I work with (ObjectStudio and VisualWorks) tracked in BottomFeeder. It's my way of staying on top of the commentary.