BTW I love the site and I really do love this particular book's summary - many of these principles are used by companies and sales people, but generally, no one company/salesman/product ever seems able to go to market while honouring all these principles. Imagine if some smart company got hold of this book and actually did everything by the book - what a force to be reckoned with they'd be!
There are some pretty commonsense observations in that book, things which people knew, 150 years ago. If you appeal to a person's sense of honour and honesty, you get more out of them than if you appeal to their rationality. If you treat people fairly, they will reward you with loyalty.
Problem with current products (especially companies wanting to appear green and/or internet-savvy) is that they try and blur the lines between economic and social standards, between free and perceived as free. With so much dishonesty being displayed, is it any wonder consumers got ripped off to the tune of the Mortgage Market Crash the USA has just experienced and however much it cost?
Ironic to my mind is the fact that one of the least honest sectors had been the auto segment - and now they're reduced to bankruptcy. I can only see the collapse of the current auto industry only as a damn good thing. The Age Of The Automobile is dead, and collapsing the huge corporations makes room for new players in the field, smaller and more ecologically-friendly (it's to be hoped) vehicle manufacturers, hopefully wiping away the huge car showroom culture as well.
And if people continue to get such dishonesty and poor return from banks, who were another major contributor to the crash, then perhaps The Age Of The Shylocks will also be over and smaller more human style financial organisations will take their place.
We can but hope that the current economic situation will backlash all over the people who caused it...