Case in point: there are now books about how to fake the authenticity people have learned to value in an effort to avoid plastic bullshit artists who think of PR and marketing as honorable pursuits on par with producing actual items of value.
This is just an outgrowth of clueless corps trying to capitalize on social media by appearing “real” on Facebook or Twitter. Hiring a twentysomething social media specialist to manage MegaCorp’s twitter feed is just so much more bullshit, people.
It comes down to this: 99% of the time, you’re either dealing with a human who controls the business you’re dealing with, and who values you as a customer, or you’re dealing with a giant faceless public corporation’s mouthpiece who neither values you nor has any power to affect your experience therewith. Megacorps are obviously eager to convince you they really do care — they “value your business” and “take your concerns seriously” — but they don’t. They care about profits and shareholder value.
You pick who you want to deal with. Vote with your dollars. And people who work at dissecting “authenticity” in an effort to extract some essence that can be sprayed on Monsanto or whomever can go DIAF, along with the people who think “branding” is something other than a natural outgrowth of making good products, charging a fair price, and treating customers with respect.