IMS & Stockholm Syndrome

IMS & Stockholm Syndrome

July 26, 2005

1 Min Read
IMS & Stockholm Syndrome

12:45 PM -- While we flood you with IMS-related content this week, perhaps it's sensible to share some airtime with a clever warning about being held "captive" to the hype.

This warning comes from John G. Waclawsky, PhD, senior technical staff, Wireless Group, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO). Waclawsky, writing in the July issue of Business Communications Review, compares the fervor over IMS to the "Stockholm Syndrome," a term that comes from a 1973 hostage event in which hostages became sympathetic to their captors.

Waclawsky says a form of the Stockholm Syndrome has taken root in technical standards groups, which he calls "System Standards Stockholm Syndrome," or S4.

Here's a snippet from Waclawsky's column:

  • What causes S4? Captives identify with their captors initially as a defensive mechanism, out of fear of intellectual challenges. Small acts of kindness by the captors, such as granting a secretarial role (often called a “chair”) to a captive in a working group are magnified, since finding perspective in a systems standards meeting, just like a hostage situation, is by definition impossible. Rescue attempts are problematic, since the captive could become mentally incapacitated by suddenly being removed from a codependent environment.

Good stuff. I wonder how this got through Cisco's PR filter.

The full article can be found here— R. Scott Raynovich, US Editor, Light Reading

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