Tag Archives: journalism

Age Doesn’t Mean Jack in Social Media

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Aged © by tonyhall

We like to think that we (sometimes) know it all. In this age of gurus, jedis, and ninjas, it is easy to have a sense of social entitlement. I’m sure you are thinking about a time you thought you were BMOC (Big Man on Campus). Maybe a blog post blew up; maybe you had a tweet shared by a celebrity.

On Friday, Cathryn Sloane had an article posted on NextGen Journal, titled, “Why Every Social Media Manager Should Be Under 25.” Sloane, a recent graduate of the University of Iowa, writes. Continue reading

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Debunking the ‘PR Has Too Much Influence’ Myth

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When the Columbia Journalism Review and ProPublica examined the growing value of public relations and its relationship with journalism, the scope of the piece, and the reaction it received from the journalism community were fairly predictable. A rousing chorus of “PR has too much influence” over [fill in the blank] seemed to fill the comments of both CJR.org and ProPublica’s website.

This notion was further advanced in July when New York Times Public Editor Arthur Brisbane explored the role of public relations professionals working with journalists in a blog post titled “PR Professionals: Bane or Boon?

The underlying sentiment in both seems to be that as journalism continues to shed thousands of its craftsmen, while public relations grows rapidly — both in stature and the number of practitioners — there is an overt level of influence being exerted by the latter over the former. And the world is just bad because of that. Continue reading

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Death of News Outlets Isn’t Good News for PR Business

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Another day, and another article bashing the growing ranks of PR flacks. The Economist, a British publication, recently ran an article saying the media business was in danger of being overrun by PR professionals. Republican, a publicly-financed American news outlet, also wrote a similar article recently.

As someone who has worked on both sides of the media business, I am concerned about this phenomenon, but I think these articles overlook a more important point.  Media critics should also be writing about the dearth of media outlets.  The reason why PR pros numbers are growing is because the number of journalists is decreasing. Continue reading

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News of the World Hacking Scandal is Bad Business, Not a ‘PR Disaster’

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The fallout last week from the News of the World phone hacking scandal, and the subsequent bombshell decision by News International to close its 168-year-old tabloid, has raised a whole slew of accusations, questions and soul-searching within the media industry as to what it all means.

And, of course, it’s also led to the media reducing this to yet another “PR disaster,” as though every business crisis, or every crisis in general, falls squarely on PR’s shoulders. If only we had that much influence on company’s bottom lines.  Continue reading

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On ‘Slime-Slinging’ and Facebook Likes Becoming the New AVE…

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This week, I wanted to weigh in on two issues related to Facebook that are gaining attention from PR pros and marketers alike: the fallout of over the Facebook/Burson-Marsteller ethics flap and the growing fascination over Facebook ‘Likes.’

Regarding the recent ethics flap, I made quite clear last week my belief, as well as that of PRSA, that the tactics B-M engaged in were unethical and improper. Now, I want to turn my attention to The Economist’s examination into what this incident portends for the future of media. Continue reading

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PR Jobs Require More than Good Writing Skills: Ex-journos find life is not so easy on ‘The Dark Side’

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Hands breaking pencilAn old joke in the PR business is that all reporters hate PR people – until they need a job. Then you’re the first person they call. Public relations would seem like a natural extension of the skills you acquire in journalism — writing, news judgment, editing and graphic design.

However, the PR business has taken a huge hit over the last few years, and many laid-off journos are finding that those PR positions, which they hoped to move into, are just not there anymore.

When the economy plunged into a recession one of the first areas that companies cut back on was marketing and public relations. In addition, when business credit dried up many companies simply could not afford the monthly retainer for a PR firm. And for the few PR jobs that do exist, journos are having to compete against recent college grads, who are often more attractive because they are cheaper to hire. In many cases these jobs have been turned into non-paying internship positions. (That is a whole column itself.) Continue reading

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Christina’s Coffee Talk: Jay Keith (Part 2)

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When I conducted my Coffee Talk with Jay Keith, there was one question/answer that I believed deserved it’s own post. Everyday we read articles and blog posts about personal branding. Jay and I have discussed this on numerous occasions. He comes from a journalist background which I believe brings a whole new perspective to the subject. So I asked him, “Are people too serious about personal branding within the SM world? Is it overrated/overused? What would you consider your personal brand?” And here is what Jay had to say: Continue reading

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Insightful Thoughts from Andy Rooney

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Katie Couric Hosts 18th Annual Broadcasting & Cable Hall Of Fame Awards

It’s 2010, yep, a new decade, new life. I’ll be the first to admit it, I hate Andy Rooney. There are two people who I hate more than anything one of them is Andy Rooney (no, I won’t tell you the other). The ancient man is 91 and I think it’s about time for him to retire, say goodbye to journalism, and just get a house on the beach in Mexico where no one can find him again. The old guy should just resign.

Anyone in PR should be watching “60 Minutes” every week. The show is a league apart from any other news program out there, and it gets tainted by ending each week with that man that just complains about life. Andy Rooney is the perfect example of why there are such misunderstandings between generations — because they refuse to adapt to the times. Continue reading

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Not Mine. Not Yours. Ours.

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Couple shaking hands with businessmanIt’s no secret that clients hire us for our contacts.  That our relationships are often the bait that gets them to sign on the dotted line.  But at the end of the contract, the course the agency’s relationship with the media has taken while representing said client has lasting benefits or consequences for both parties. Continue reading

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Dear Reporter – We’re Really Here to Help

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Person holding coffee cup, compass inside cup, elevated viewI’m not one to state the obvious but this needs to be said – PR pros are here to help reporters.  We’re here to provide information, coordinate interviews and come through with a last minute source when deadline knocks.

It’s not just about us touting our clients and promoting our business partners, it’s about being a source, and more importantly, a resource. Continue reading

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