Learning a lesson in life is usually painful and involves some level of being humble and accepting your role in the error, issue or whatever you want to call it.  So last nights blog post by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, which we covered here, appears to be an honest effort to set things right.  So far so good.

That same blog post also discussed a re-branding of the Netflix DVD by Mail business unit to separate the streaming and physical media sides of the business.  Again, he spent some time discussing the decision and the reasons behind it.  So far so good compared to the way they handled the price increases earlier this year.

However, despite those best efforts, Netflix and its new business Qwikster has stepped into a mess relating to the name of their new service and this is the reasoning behind the title of this post.

Let this be a lesson to all out there who run a business, organization or whatever you care about and want a social media presence.  Research the social media side of things to make sure that your selected name and trademark is available or that you have made the appropriate moves to gain control of that presence in social media.

This is no different than when anyone of us want to create a new website, tool or service and we diligently search for the best domain name out there for that.  We want it to be unique and un-tainted.

It is being widely reported that the Twitter account that uses the name @Qwikster, which I will warn you uses quite colorful language and refers to quite dubious activities, is not in the hands of Netflix but in the hands of a Jason Castillo.  Jason is the benefactor of the recent news from Netflix about the creation of the Qwikster service in that he has apparently gained over 2,000 followers today. That count is based on a story from Mashable’s Stan Schroeder which indicated Jason only had 59 followers about four hours ago.  He is adding users at a pretty good pace as well – 20 in fact since I started this piece.

I am sure that Netflix did not want this type of hype and attention with their recent announcement.

So the bottom line is that before you finalize that decision to name your company XXXXXXXX you really should search Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites to be sure your new persona is not already taken and worse yet establishing a less than ideal image of your services name.