A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 8/22/11

Happy Friday, folks! If you live on the East Coast like I do, then you’ve already survived an earthquake and are bracing yourself for a hurricane. What a week, huh? With all this inclement weather, it should make for a boring weekend indoors. At least I have two Netflix on hand. So, if you’re holed up at home, surviving on bread, eggs, and milk, here are this week’s links and articles of interest to share–enjoy! And stay safe wherever you are :)

Some Good PR for Sharks (by @ginidietrich via @SpinSucks):

Ms. Dietrich and I had a cosmic connection a few weeks back when I posted the plea for good PR for sharks, especially around Shark Week. It turned out she had a draft post in her queue about some amazing (and real) statistics she heard on the radio about shark attacks, which she shared with her readers. PR stunt or not, the facts got her attention as a listener and shows the power of what “good” PR can do, even for the ocean’s most dangerous predator.

How to Survive a Website Redesign Project (by @cassdull):

Here is a post that I literally wanted to get up and bow down to when I read it (literally!)

I am in the midst of a website redesign for my school, and it’s no easy (or fast-moving) task at that. I thought I was alone in the world, until I read Ms. Dull’s post. Not only does she give me hope in my website redesign project and demonstrate empathy for those working in higher education, she also incorporates a kick-ass zombie flick tie-in! So, whether fighting off hoards of the undead or figuring out how to manage a website redesign committee, I think I’ll survive somehow.

Social Media & the Future of PR (by @TDefren):

I should add Todd Defren to my list of blogging heroes—he’s been writing consistently for seven years.

In fact, I attribute my knowledge of blogs back to about that same time when I came across a PR 2.0 Handbook that Mr. Defren’s agency Shift Communications put out. Although his post is more reflective, it is a good example of how powerful social media is when it comes to driving the conversation. It’s a good reminder to PR pro’s to consider the “guy on his iPhone” that Mr. Defren mentions, as communications become more social and less reliant on traditional means.

End of an Era: Romenesko to Partially Retire (via @Poytner):

Wow, two posts about my blogging heroes this week. Before I even knew what “aggregation” meant, I knew there was a man named Jim Romenesko who used to wake up at the crack of dawn to scan the news to share the news about the news.

Sounds weird, but I grew very fond of his blog as a means to know what was going on within the media industry. But, as Mr. Romenesko announced his partial retirement, I found I was not alone in my feelings of admiration for the work he established over the years. Steve Myers, who will share the site’s aggregation responsibility as Mr. Romenesko partially steps down, collected many of the responses to his announcement in Storify and shared them in this post.

What do you think? Please feel free to drop a comment and share your articles of interest as well.

August 26, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , . blogging, journalism, public relations. 4 comments.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 8/8/11

Happy Friday! Another week has drawn to an end, and for many on the East Coast, we’re getting a little break from the heat and humidity. I was happy to open the windows overnight and get some fresh air into the house after weeks of circulated air. Don’t get me wrong, I couldn’t live without air conditioning. But three weeks straight is a little rough. Oh well, we’re that much closer to comfortable weather in the Fall. If you plan on taking a break this weekend, here are this week’s links and posts of interest to share-enjoy!

Making Time for Writing (by @chrisbrogan):

Writing for a blog, plus working full-time, plus a personal life to balance can be tricky. Chris Brogan would be the one to talk when it comes to finding time to write a book, considering all he has on his plate. What I enjoyed about this post was how the tips can apply to writing for anything-especially finding time to write a blog. It’s worth it to try out a few of these tips and to check out the next posts in his series about writing a book because, in the end, writing is writing and we could all use more time to do it.

Higher Ed Communications Catching Up to Social Media (by Karine Joly via @CASEAdvance):

Here is an example of a good, well-organized and presented post about digging deeper into social media statistics with regard to higher education. Author Karine Joly notes that although many statistics point to higher education institutions using social media, it seems they are not using them effectively.

Ms. Joly’s post brings up valid questions to ask when using social media, but the most striking thought came from the comments section. One of the commenters brings up the analogy that just using one social media platform without a strategy is like using a hammer without using the whole tool box to build a house. It’s simply not effective and doesn’t accomplish your goal.

Journalists Under Attack in London Riots (by @pressfreedom) *warning- the photo accompanying this article is a little bloody:

All week, the news (and social media) has been covering the civil unrest in London. It’s a complex and multi-layered issue, but that’s not what this post is about exactly. Instead, the Committee to Protect Journalists demonstrates within the context of current events how the press is not safe in international conflicts, as the media appears to be a target in the London riots.

CPJ’s report includes accounts from several different news organizations, including CNN, who have fled for cover when the violence has been directed at them. It’s a difficult situation when your job depends on your ability to report on dangerous situations, and for the press covering these stories, it can literally be a life or death situation.

An Instagram Day in the Life (by @arikhanson):

An interesting way to keep your blog content fresh is to offer sneak peeks into your “real life.” It’s a great storytelling opportunity, and one that Arik Hanson pulls off wonderfully by sharing his enthusiasm (or obsession) with Instagram by showing his readers a day in his life with pictures. For a former Minneapolis resident, this also tugged at my emotional strings more than it might have his other readers. But Mr. Hanson keeps it interesting, stringing the story along with photos, and also demonstrating what he likes about Instagram.

And since Mr. Hanson’s post has me thinking of home, I found a video to share with you set to a song named for the City of Lakes:

August 12, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . blogging, journalism, social media. 2 comments.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 7/25/11

Happy Friday all! And so another summer month draws to a close. I can’t say I’m a huge fan of the hot weather, so I look at it as one month closer to the Fall. It looks like the heat and humidity are here to say in the Mid-Atlantic. I hope it’s not too unbearable wherever you are. If you need a break from the heat or outdoor chores, here are this week’s links and posts of interest to share–enjoy!

Social Media Fatigue and the Communications Challenge by @rustyspeidel via @marijean @kmueller62:

Here’s a great post with great intelligent comments-so intelligent I dared not add to them.

This post presents a good head scratcher for communications pro’s: what do you do when it appears that social media is not an appropriate outlet to market/promote your clients’/company’s products and services? Mr. Speidel makes a good case with his company’s specific products and knowledge of his audience, yet he constantly gets social media proposals. Does this mean communications pro’s are pushing so hard for social media that we forget the overlying need for appropriate strategy?

Again, I recommend you read the comments section because the commenters offer some good ideas as the alternative to this viewpoint.

Big Blogger-Little Blogger Conundrum by @Soulati:

Jayme Soulati, who has a fantastic blog that she keeps current and interesting, ponders on the issue of what’s like for the “big” bloggers and the “little” bloggers. For someone who is a little fish in a little pond, this post really resonated with me. I think most any blogger can relate to her sentiment, whether big or small. All sizes aside, Ms. Soulati’s thoughts are introspective and inviting at the same time, as many bloggers weighed in on her comments section, demonstrating how even a “little” blogger can create a big impression with her audience.

CNN News Anchor Gives Up (Video) via @JessicaKRoy via @stuffjournalistslike:

This isn’t so much a post as it is a clip from The Daily Show website that points out how CNN anchor Don Lemon appears to be frustrated with the fluff content he’s forced to spew on air. It’s hilarious-I love how keen Jon Stewart and his writing staff are with picking up little details like this from the media.

I often wondered how news anchors can keep a straight face when reading the teleprompter on some of the more ridiculous stories, and, maybe, Mr. Lemon is getting fed up with it as well. It makes me wonder, if someone put a question mark on his teleprompter, would he read it like Ron Burgundy? Stay classy, CNN!

Hitler Finds Out About Triberr (Video) from @Triberr via @DannyBrown:

(Word of warning-the video doesn’t contain explicatives in English, but there are a few in the subtitles.)

Since we’re on a video kick here, I had to include this one.  I thought all the “Hitler Finds Out That…” videos had been stripped from the internets and that I would have to go back to the “New Haircut” video meme for amusement. But then, Danny Brown shared a link to this video where Mein Furhrer discovers the new blogging community Triberr. I haven’t read as much as I should about Triberr, but at least they have a sense of humor to poke fun at social media egos and how their community has some bloggers in a tizzy.

Please feel free to share any articles or videos you found this week as well. Have a great weekend :)

July 29, 2011. Tags: , , , , . journalism, media, social media. 3 comments.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 7/11/11

What a week–and what a week for Rupert Murdoch or anyone at News Corps! Even after shuttering the News of the World on Sunday, it seems the phone-hacking scandal has only continued to balloon into a bigger problem. Youza…we’ll have to wait and see how this little media soap opera continues to unfold. In the meantime, here are some links and articles of interest (not related to News Corps)–enjoy!

Skills that Journalism Students Need to Develop (by @andymboyle)

As a former journalism student who ended up not working as a reporter, it was cathartic to read Andy Boyle’s experience and his advice to journalism students. Mr. Boyle seemed to run into the same job slump as I did, but he was smart enough to figure out another important component of supporting journalism-web programming.

The resulting conversation we exchanged over Twitter and in the comments section suggest that journalism schools may need to consider teaching more than just researching, reporting and editing. Today’s journalism students need to know where communications are moving and either adapt their skills to those media or develop the technical skills to support them.

Learning to Love Content (by @eggmarketing):

Here is a great ode to content development from Susan Payton, the Marketing Eggspert (see what she did with that word there? Doesn’t that make you already like her for having a sense of humor?) Ms. Payton is obviously good at what she does– her content is concise, gets to the point and shares relevant information with others. If you need any help with how to promote content marketing for your clients, check out her list of reasons why and I’m sure you’ll find a few that are helpful.

Bored People Quit & Employee Retention (by @rands via @michaelrlitt):

Speaking from personal experience, I know that boredom leads to frustration on the job, so this post by Michael Lopp was especially relevant. What’s more, he describes how to recognize and deal with boredom among employees, so if you are in a management position, you have some useful tips to pull from. It’s also a well-organized post that is a good example of how to structure situational case studies that keep a reader’s attention while still getting its main points across.

A Discussion About Blogger Compensation (by @prcog via @dannybrown):

If you ask me what is one of the best things about social media, it’s the conversations that occur within in it and the ideas that people exchange when engaged in a real discussion.

Nathan Burgess touches on the hot topic of blogger compensation (whether monetary or in kind) quite eloquently in this post. I tend to agree with him that bloggers need to determine their category and if their blog warrants compensation from the brand. Likewise, Mr. Burgess is smart to point out that it’s subjective whether or not compensating bloggers will work for a particular brand. Overall, it’s a necessary conversation and one well put by Mr. Burgess and the comments that ensue.

Hope you find these interesting–feel free to share any links or articles you found interesting this week :)

July 15, 2011. Tags: , , , , . blogging, corporate communications, journalism. 2 comments.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 7/4/11

Welcome back from the Fourth of July holiday! Hope your weekend was nice and relaxing. The only downside of a holiday weekend is getting back into the swing of things at the office or homestead. Good thing this was a short work week, and it’s only the beginning of July, so there’s more summer fun in store. If you have a few moments to spare as your week winds down, here are a few links and posts of interest to share–enjoy!

Burst Your Bubble for Clarity (by @Narciso17 via @Shonali):

Here is one of the first posts I read after a long weekend that provided an “a-ha” moment. It’s true–we communicators are usually secure in our little bubbles where our worlds make sense to us and those in close proximity to us.

Stepping back and seeking out clarity is the key to effective communications, and Narciso Tovar provides some pointers on how to burst our figurative bubbles in order to gain said clarity. Quite an eye-opening post and one that is simple yet applicable to many communications projects we may be working on.

Working with Student-generated Content (by @lizallen):

Here is a great example of a serial post that builds a topic from the ground up and ends with a few examples.

The first link here is actually the fifth post, but if you follow the link, you’ll get to Ms. Allen’s series. While her posts deal mostly with those working with students in higher education, there are also practical applications for those working in multi-departmental corporate social media.

How Not to Use Twitter Hashtags (by Erik Sass via @MediaPost):

Entenmann’s, those preserved delectable treats in a case at the end of the aisle, didn’t research the context of a trending hashtag that was connected to the Casey Anthony verdict. The inadvertently insensitive tweet was quickly rectified but hasn’t spared the company from ridicule in this post and from joining the pantheon of other companies that have Twitter mishaps.

The case points to the need to do a little research into the context of Twitter and social media. It’s not about jumping on a trending topic so much as it is finding one that is appropriate for your brand.

How Community and Rural Newspapers are Surviving (via @romenesko):

Print is not dead–long live the community press!

That’s what reports like this one from Stanford University make me want to shout from the mountain tops. It’s a lengthy read but includes some interesting facts and a neat interactive map of weekly newspapers. For folks in PR, it might mean looking to include the community press in your clients’ media lists.

And in case you still want to capture the holiday spirit, here is a favorite Pixies song to keep your Friday festive:

July 8, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . communications, journalism, social media. 2 comments.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 6/27/11

Happy Friday, all! I’m sure many of you are looking forward to the long holiday weekend. It amazes me how one night a year, thousands of cities across the nation unite in a common love for pyrotechnics in the sky. Here’s to wishing everyone a safe and festive Fourth of July. If you have a few spare moments, here are this week’s links and posts of interest to share–enjoy :)

Human Interaction and Social Media (by @alumnifutures):

Here is a simple post about a common social media problem-pressure to get involved because everyone else is in it. Andy Shaindlin summarizes this common social media issue and a practical solution in a succinct manner. He states quite simply that it breaks down to human interaction. While I’m not a surfer (or much of a beach bum), his analogy and quote about surfing couldn’t be more appropriate!

What to Make of PR, Journalism and Bloggers (by @jspepper via @geoffliving):

There have been several separate stories about the rise of PR and the fall of local journalism. One of my favorite bloggers, Jeremy Pepper, wrote a guest post on Geoff Livingston’s blog that synthesizes these articles while also providing some contextualization around the real implications.

While I may share a more optimistic view of the direction we seem to be headed, Jeremy makes a good point that it will all come down to who can most successfully push their content. The challenge for all parties involved boils down to who wins the content battle in the end, as they will ultimately shape the news as it is perceived.

The Truth about PR (by @JulesZunichPR):

Very few people in PR seem to want to admit that they are human and not perfect. In the agency/client-seeking world, everyone is perfect and there is no RFP you can’t respond to or pitch.

Jules Zunich comes clean and explains why she turned away two potential clients, in favor of being honest and not using “smoke and mirrors” to make it appear as though she had staff or expertise they were seeking. That’s not to say Ms. Zunich is not a skilled, experienced PR pro. Far from it, I think this post demonstrates how PR folks (especially those in small practices) sometimes need to turn down potential business in favor of focusing on what they do best.

How to Spot Liars in Social Media (by @digitaltonto):

I am grateful to Neicole Crepeau for introducing me to Greg Satell’s blog. He always writes well-thought out and logical posts on relevant topics in social media and marketing. Yes, sometimes it can be challenging to read his posts at times, but it’s good to work those brain cells, right? In this post, Greg describes common writing “tells” that indicate the writer is not forthright with their facts. Some are innocent mistakes, but it’s good to read and to consider if you are using these terms and what they imply to your readers.

And what better way to celebrate Philadelphia on this independence weekend than with an old school video of the city’s favorite sons Dean and Gene Ween. Here is a rendition of Freedom of ’76 from 1993 (on The Jane Pratt Show no less!) with Gener giving Prince a run for his money with the falsetto:

July 1, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . journalism, public relations, social media. Leave a comment.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 5/30/11

It’s finally Friday–at least for many of us, it was a short work week thanks to the holiday weekend. Getting back into the daily grind was a little difficult, but there’s always the next long weekend to look forward to, right? So, while some of us recover from sunburns and too much macaroni salad, here are this week’s articles and posts to share–enjoy!

Dealing with Negative Blog Comments (by @journalistics):

For as long as I’ve been reading Journalistics, I’ve never known the primary blogger Jeremy Porter to be a sloppy writer. In fact, it’s the quality content that makes me come back to read his blog and share it with others.

Chaulk it up to my speedy online reading, but I completely overlooked a grammatical error on one of his posts a few weeks back, but someone else did and took it upon themselves to send him a snippy personal email. Every blogger will have to deal with negative blog comments eventually, and it’s important to own up to our mistakes and roll with the punches sometimes. It’s a learning process of sorts. Mr. Porter demonstrates how this experience luckily has not deterred him from continuing to write and refine his craft.

Are Blogs the New Establishment of Media? (by @JasonFalls via @arikhanson):

Here’s an original thought-with so many blogs becoming credible news sources (ie. Huffington Post, Mashable, and TechCrunch), perhaps they are becoming the new media establishment. Jason Falls makes an interesting point with this post about the growing credibility of blogs as media sources. While I wouldn’t go so far as to count myself in this camp, I do believe there is validity to bloggers applying journalistic practice and standards to their content. Now, if that makes them journalists per se is another argument…

Implications of PR Filling the News Gap (by @mstory123 via @Shonali):

A study by the Columbia Journalism Review which examined how PR practitioners are “filling the gap” in news coverage due to the shrinking newsroom has spurred several articles and numerous tweets.

When I read this article, I recall sensing an underhanded swipe at PR in general from this article, and apparently, so did Mark Story who wrote this reaction piece to the article. While the facts can’t be ignored-that PR jobs are on the rise while journalism jobs are on the down slope-I agree with Mark’s sentiment that it doesn’t mean PR is creasing its palms in the darkness, ready to pounce with propaganda and spin to the public’s dismay.

Articles like this do the PR profession no favor by simply rehashing the stereotype that all PR is spin and that there can’t be a professional working relationship between the PR pro and the journalist.

Understanding Silver Bullets and Sales (by @tpop81):

It’s important for PR folks to understand what their marketing and sales colleagues are going through-we’re all communicators and often fighting for the same budget. I appreciate blogs like Thomas Takeaways, mostly because of how Thomas conveys marketing and business concepts in an easy-to-understand manner and for his great analogies. This week’s post described the ongoing discussion between the marketing and sales departments about products and pipelines. It’s a great insight into what these departments are prioritizing and their perspectives on what drives a company’s success.

Hope you find these as interesting as I did. Do you have any articles or posts to share as well?

June 3, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , . journalism, marketing. 2 comments.

Threats to Press Freedom Abroad

Media relations are an important component of public relations.

It’s common for PR folks to develop close working relationships with their media contacts, often based on trust and with respect for each other’s role in shaping the communications that reach our audiences.

But one thing the PR pro in the United States has never had to consider is the safety or livelihood of their reporter contacts.

The reality for reporters working in many countries outside of the United States is that journalism can be a dangerous profession.

Proof of this fact is 2011 Impunity Index report, which The Committee to Protect Journalists released yesterday. It identified the thirteen most dangerous countries for reporters based on the number of unsolved or non-prosecuted murders of journalists in comparison with their total population.

For any journalist, whether current or former like myself, it is a jarring reminder of how important it is to advocate for the free press.

And it is a reality check for both PR folks and journalists in the United States to thank our lucky stars we have the freedoms afforded to us within our own borders.

Some of the most striking facts from the report include:

  • Journalists are often targeted in conflict/war zones

While reporters are wounded or killed in the line of combat, the CPJ also found that they are often targeted in countries in active combat. Iraq topped the list of countries with the most unsolved journalist murders, along with other countries that are no strangers to conflict such as Afghanistan and Pakistan.

  • A remedy to impunity against journalist murders is elusive

The CPJ has actively met with the leadership in many of these countries but found that pervasive corruption within the law and judicial systems prevents many of them from adequately addressing these cases. Consider that all 92 cases of murdered journalists in Iraq over the past ten years have gone unsolved or non-prosecuted. It begs the question of how much do these governments value free expression if they turn a blind eye or keep their hands tied at so many injustices against the press?

  • Violence is often directed against political reporters

Thirty percent of the unsolved cases the CPJ found involved political reporters in the Impunity Index. In the United States, political reporting is such a part of our daily news, it’s incomprehensible how the same reporters in other countries live with targets on their backs. Imagine if someone took a hit out on Chris Matthews for something critical he said against a prominent senator?

  • Local reporters are killed at higher rates than international reporters

Just as the news is local, so is the violence permeated against journalists in their own countries. While I credit the CPJ and other organizations like Reporters Without Borders and Human Rights Watch with keeping a high-profile of crimes against the free press, very few of these local cases make it into the international media. Perhaps it’s because they are local to those countries or because there are so many. But these crimes have the potential to enact a chilling effect on free expression. Take for example, how El Diario, a newspaper in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico (#8 on the Index) curtailed their coverage after a photographer and crime reporter were both killed just two years apart from each other.

Thankfully, the CPJ’s Impunity Report is not all doom and gloom. Some of the countries on the list have made progress in their efforts to solve more cases of journalist murders.

I also understand the limitations of my observations. I am viewing it from my perspective of always being free to write and express my thoughts and opinions (so long as they do not incite danger against others). I do not mean to be naïve nor judgmental of these countries.

It would be interesting to hear what PR practitioners in some of these countries think about this report and how their colleagues in journalism are affected by violence and fear of retaliation.

What do you think? Should PR pro’s be concerned with a free press or violence directed against journalists?

June 2, 2011. Tags: , , , , . journalism. Leave a comment.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 5/23/11

Happy Friday, all. It’s the official kick off to the summer–Memorial Day weekend. Another sign of summertime that makes me happy, at least in Philly, is the start of Hoagiefest at Wawa. Hope you all enjoy the long weekend filled with grilling, BBQ, cold beverages, and good times. Here are this week’s links and articles of interest to share–enjoy!

Are Healthcare Marketers Killing Twitter? (by @philbaumann via @joshdbrett):

It’s easy to get wrapped up in the latest marketing craze, buy into buzzwords, and forget what social media is really about or why you’re even involved in it in the first place. Phil Baumann has been active in social media and healthcare for years, so I value his observations and analyses.

This post makes a good point in healthcare marketing, but it also has applications for non-healthcare marketers who use Twitter. Basically, no one wants to be broadcasted at–in healthcare social media, we want a community. With social media marketing reaching the saturation point, we may lose out on the value it brings to online communities. Phil’s post serves as a sober reminder to take into consideration when using Twitter as a marketing tool.

Failing in Order to Learn (by @ginidietrich on @spinsucks):

Reading a simple reflectional post is nice every now and then. It gives us pause for thought and takes us out of the professional equation for a minute. Gini Dietrich of Spin Sucks had a honest-to-goodness post earlier this week admitting that which we all fear-failure. I appreciated her honesty and candor on the topic by sharing a personal story with her regular readers. But the story isn’t all doom and gloom. In the end, it’s how failure is only the beginning. If we learn from our “failures” (if you want to use such a strong term) you can actually have more success in the future.

Facebook and Journalists – Friend or Foe? (by @FortuneMagazine):

Having followed Vadim Lavrusik for a few months on Twitter, I learned about the relatively new resource called Journalists on Facebook (link). This article draws attention to how developing a good relationship with reporters on Facebook could elevate the site to a trusted source of news for its members.

I hadn’t given much through to this notion because I don’t use my Facebook page that much aside from personal and familial connections. But others use it daily, even hourly, so the thought it could be a home page that one checks every morning and before the end of the night doesn’t seem that far off. It will be interesting to see the outcomes of Facebook’s resource for journalists and if it translates into some sort of revenue for the company or potential trusted news source for its readers.

Five Reasons the Reporter Didn’t Quote You (by @MrMediaTraining):

Mr. Media Training, or Brad Phillips, has a great site with numerous helpful posts on dealing with media interviews and cultivating good media relationships. A post this week deals with a situation that’s likely happened to everyone–your client/spokesperson is interviewed but is not quoted in the story.

Rather than pull our hair out, Mr. Phillips offers a few reasons why this may have occurred which can help in better media interviews in the future.  And judging by some of the comments from former journos, he’s not far off from his reasons.

May 27, 2011. Tags: , , , . journalism, marketing, media relations. Leave a comment.

A Little Birdy Told Me…Week of 5/16/11

So another work week draws to an end. Anybody attend a graduation commencement this past weekend or perhaps you were busy preparing for the end of the world this Saturday. Bummer, I had wanted to put some finishing touches on my bathroom. I guess I’ll see how this “Rapture” thing works out and if I get to sealing my bath tub or not. In the meantime, here are this week’s links and articles to share–enjoy!

The News is Social (by @joshdbrett):

I  have to give a special shout out to my colleague and classmate Josh Brett who graduated last week from Temple University with his graduate degree in communication management. Hooray Josh!

Working full time and going to school part time is no easy task, but he completed his capstone and remained active on Twitter and on his blog. This week’s post discussed a timely topic, that of the evolving tools for journalism and the speed that news travels as a result. It’s a tricky topic because there are postive and negative aspects to it, but no matter how you cut it, social media has become prominent in the evolving world of journalism.

Basic HTML Tips for PR Pros (by @Brianful and @daniel_c_baker via @worob):

To a non-techie, the words “HTML coding”  are frightening. But not really-there are some basics about HTML coding that even a PR professional can master and work into their client’s or company’s materials.

Brian Perry and Dan Baker provide a peek into the world of HTML coding with this approachable guest post on PR at Sunrise. They show in plain language and through examples how PR folks can pick up basic HTML skills. I like that they call these “baby steps to baby steps”-it makes me feel better for having to read their post about five times to get it!

How Journalists Are Getting Story Ideas (by @journalismnews):

It’s always good to read a few surveys here and there to stay abreast of the latest trends, especially as they relate to social media. The latest survey from Orelia PR came out this week, and it shows that more and more journalists are using social media outlets to source and verify stories.

What’s also interesting is that despite the increased use of social media to search and share news, journalists still look to PR agencies and press releases for news sources. I take that finding with a grain of salt, as a PR agency conducted this survey. But it shows that the relationship between journalists and PR folks persists regardless of the new communications tools available to both parties.

CDC Tells You How to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse (by @CDCgov via @JeffreyYoung_HC):

It sounded like a hoax from The Onion-I caught on my Twitterfeed a tweet from Bloomberg health reporter Jeffrey Young that the CDC had posted about a zombie apocalypse survival guide on their Public Health Matters blog. It got so many visits that it crashed the site!

All kidding aside, this story is actually a great example of how even a government agency can use social media outlets to showcase some personality, humor, and also wrap up important messages, such as emergency preparedness. The CDC remained loyal to their core message of being ready in an emergency while also integrating popular culture to tell their story to their current and new readers. I would only add that their zombie survival guide was lacking in the weapons department if you ask me.

So, barring any end-of-the-world issues, this Saturday, do you have any links or articles of interest to share as well?

May 20, 2011. Tags: , , , , . journalism, media relations, social media. Leave a comment.

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