PR: Asking questions isn't terminal…

Isn’t it funny how a little web application can set the InterWeb all a flutter?

The bets are on, some people believe Twitter’s great, some people believe it’s a waste of time and some are making me laugh out loud.

However, I was somewhat surprised to see David Parmet’s post – as I have a lot of time for his opinions – who has taken exception to this post from Clive Armitage.

I actually disagree with the Rex Hammock post, that David references. Rex states that there’s no need for discussion on Twitter because you can ignore it.

The fact is that a lot people are falling all over themselves about it, so it’s equally valid for people to question if it’s as important as people are making out.

In fact they (or should that be “we”!) are doing everyone a favour by questioning the validity of the claims being made about Twitter.

[Disclaimer: I use Twitter by the way. But not every fifteen seconds.]

Earlier this week in Newcastle I had some fun with Jangles [a.k.a Neville] about his Twitter habits. 

Debate is good and healthy.

Where, in my opinion, David steps over the mark, is this:

The problem with most PR people and PR agencies in general. The “I don’t get it so I’ll just ignore it” syndrome that’s led many agencies down the road to extinction.



How can a post where someone offers an opinion that they don’t really understand what the fuss is about mean their on the “road to extinction”.

Give me a break.

So I’m a big old dinosaur as well am I?

It’s VITAL that we question the validity of this new stuff both for our clients and ourselves.

No one is going to be extinct because they don’t see the value in Twitter posts.

No one is wrong to promote or dismiss the validity of a bloody web applet.

Let’s keep this discussion in the real world. I’m only interested in how the new online world is going to effect the work I do for my client or employer.  If I disagree with the pundits who believe that a new widget is changing the world as we know it, my opinion is as valid as theirs.

I stand over my record on new technology – it’s well documented. I welcome debate, but I’ll call out something if I don’t see the value or understand the value and that doesn’t mean I’m stupid or becoming extinct.

It means I’m human.

It’s time we all came down off the moral high ground.

Delivering the New PR in Newcastle

Just a really short post to say today’s event in Newcastle was extremely enjoyable.  Good to catch up with the gang and excellent participation from the audience.

Now if only there were flights at a reasonable hour from Newcastle to Dublin…

Travelling for the next few days, but I’ll post some more thoughts after some much needed rest…

And lots of opportunities to vent about Twitter… fantastic!

Public Relations Blog: 5 Years On…

A significant personal blogging milestone has just passed.  I am now officially blogging for five years.

If I had known then, that I’d still be at it five years on, I think I would have tried to make my first post a little more insightful, humorous and clever. Good lesson for life there.

It’s interesting to look back over the intervening five years from a personal, PR and online perspective. 

A lot has changed and a lot hasn’t.

I note that between the ages of five and six a child should be able:


To learn to distinguish between reality and fantasy.


I think that’s a fine developmental goal for a PR blogger also.

I invested a massive amount of personal time in blogging for the first few years, then due to growing work and family commitments throttled back. I think I’ve now found a happy medium. I post enough to keep my hand in, but not enough to become a D-list blogger.

It’s a nice place. I haven’t even checked my visitor number in a year. Now that’s maturity (or laziness).

Some observations:

  • Blogging did take off after all – and there’s still a lot of potential
  • Other tools have taken much longer – we’re still waiting on RSS
  • There are now over 600 PR bloggers! When I started there were three [Richard, Phil and Jim]
  • There’s far more exciting things happening online today – from a tool perspective – than there was five years ago
  • We’re on a long journey and we’ve barely started

Here’s to another five years….

PR Social Networking…

With relatively little fanfare and no spam we now have fifteen members of the social network.

We are a unique social network:

1) We have no idea why we’ve joined (or even started it)

2) We have done no networking other than the (very) odd post and signing up

3) We have no idea what to do with it.

If you’re interested in experiencing such an idyllic online social network, with the added bonus of no pressure to perform like a seal or show you are cool in the real or online world, come and join.

IIA Event – Dublin

We had a great evening last night in the Shelbourne Hotel at the event: “Blogging: New Media, Business and the Law” hosted by the Irish Internet Association and Fleishman-Hillard.

The room was packed (with everyone aware of blogging and an incredibly high level of awareness of Second Life…).

Along with myself, Sarah Carey was her inimitable self, Richard Delevan from the Sunday Tribune gave an incredibly interesting talk on the new generation online, while TJ McIntyre managed to frighten the pants off any listening bloggers with the potential legal issues of rabbiting online.

It was very enjoyable and even through we ran very late we had a full house to the end, which is probably the best measure!

The IIA will be publishing a podcast of the event online in the coming days.


  • Sorry I should have mentioned that Ciaran Buckley did a great job as compare!

Twitter is changing the world? C'mon now…

I added Twitter to this blog about eight weeks ago.

I thought it was a useful little applet to provide visitors to this site with an idea of whether I was around, on vacation, travelling etc.  That’s about it.

Now it seems it’s the hottest thing on the Interweb.

For the love of jebus.

This behavior of making everything that appears online as “the new new thing” just isn’t terribly helpful in my opinion. 

How long will the passion and commitment last?

Surely if you really want to know is someone online you can use IM or E-mail or perish the thought – how very analog of me – use a phone.

I think Twitter is interesting, useful even, but it’s NOT the answer to the world’s ills.  I see there’s even a new search engine that’s been released for it.

One question.


Maybe (and not for the first time) I’m missing something. Enlighten me.


Kevin… Thank you, I am not alone…

Postscript 1:

OK I’ll admit that Twittervision is a cool little application but will you sit and watch it twice?

Euroblog findings, connectivity 2.0, blogging…

Euroblog 2007 Findings

Philip has published some results from this year’s Euroblog survey of over 400 professional communicators across 30 countries.

  • 85% of respondents believe that weblogs and social software are revolutionizing the way we communicate.
  • A lack of skilled employees is the largest factor limiting the use of blogs (69%) with 42% quoting the fact that they can’t demonstrate ROI.
  • 83% say that finding the time is the biggest challenge

Very interesting stuff, though I imagine it’s weighted towards to more technically savvy practitioner.

You can see the findings here.


Connectivity not creativity

John Wagner makes a very interesting point wondering is all this Web 2.0 stuff about generating content or being able to find and share content. It’s probably a mix, but user-generated content gets the headlines. Meanwhile many of us are happy with the accessibility.


Guide to Corporate Blogging

Mark van der Wolf at Lewis PR has released a guide to Corporate Blogging – via Morgan McLintic.


Editor’s Note:

I think you’ll appreciate that the headline of this post won’t be filed under “most creative blog headline of the month”. My only excuse is I’m just back from holidays and I’m doing my best! 🙂