Eric Bryant's blog listings. Feed Zend_Feed_Writer 1.10.8 (http://framework.zend.com) http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts Real-time Notification and Display of Pledges with Our Text-to-Donate Service By

Development specialists at nonprofits, charities and NGOs who oversee the fundraising initiatives at their organizations have been asking us to build as seamless, easy-to-use functionality enabling them to display donor pledges, in real-time, during their events. Our developers have been working on this for the past year, and now we have a creative, effective solution.

With our donations by text message service, we now have the ability to post real-time notifications to Twitter and/or Tweetchat.com, and to append a branded hashtag to the tweets. Your hashtag will be unique to your organization or event only.
Display Donations and Pledges in Real-time with Gnosis Media Group's Text to Pledge Service
When your prospective donors send in a pledge via text message, we'll send it to Twitter, append your branded or event-specific hashtag, and post the pledge in a matter of seconds! The cool part is that your Tweetchat.com "room" is updated all from the text message your donor sends to your donate-by-text phone number!

Prett sweet, huh?

Now, all you have to do is go to your Tweetchat.com room and figure out on your end how you wish to display your Tweetchat real-time updater during your event. Click here to start receiving donations by text message today!

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Sat, 02 Mar 2013 13:22:20 -0600 http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2013/03/02/real-time_notification_and_display_of_pledges_with_our_text-to-donate_service http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2013/03/02/real-time_notification_and_display_of_pledges_with_our_text-to-donate_service By

Development specialists at nonprofits, charities and NGOs who oversee the fundraising initiatives at their organizations have been asking us to build as seamless, easy-to-use functionality enabling them to display donor pledges, in real-time, during their events. Our developers have been working on this for the past year, and now we have a creative, effective solution.

With our donations by text message service, we now have the ability to post real-time notifications to Twitter and/or Tweetchat.com, and to append a branded hashtag to the tweets. Your hashtag will be unique to your organization or event only.
Display Donations and Pledges in Real-time with Gnosis Media Group's Text to Pledge Service
When your prospective donors send in a pledge via text message, we'll send it to Twitter, append your branded or event-specific hashtag, and post the pledge in a matter of seconds! The cool part is that your Tweetchat.com "room" is updated all from the text message your donor sends to your donate-by-text phone number!

Prett sweet, huh?

Now, all you have to do is go to your Tweetchat.com room and figure out on your end how you wish to display your Tweetchat real-time updater during your event. Click here to start receiving donations by text message today!

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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0
Hulksmash + Media = Not Good PR!

Commentary by Angelica Garcia-Hennings, Communications Intern of Gnosis Media Group. gnosisarts.com/home/Services

The video is a clip from the off-the-air television show "West-Wing", Season 1, Episode 1, 1999-2000, written and produced by Aaron Sorkin, directed by Thomas Schlamme and John Wells.

It identifies the importance of choosing your words wisely when addressing the public. Josh made an offensive statement about religious conservatives. He wanted a "cheap laugh" but his words ironically cost him a lot.

As PR professionals you must keep in mind that your words do not just represent you, but your company and people connected to you. William Shakespeare said "Words once spoken have wings." You cannot take back what you said - especially if the media gets a hold of your statements. Take every effort to be educated in the realms of the culture, demographic, class, and characteristics of the publics you are addressing. If unwise words slip from your mouth, the best you can do is manage the situation and steer away from the negativity.

The media tend to uphold themselves as a guardian of public interest. If words or body language are misinterpreted, your client's reputation is at risk. The media is democratic in terms of they allow the public to discuss and participate in deciding what your reputation will be. They will ultimately provoke the discussions and control the public's opinion. If you issue any kind of offensive statement, joke or gesture that is unclear the media may "fan the flames" of discord by taking sides, emphasizing prejudices, muddling the facts and peddling half-truths.

Josh's words potentially cost him his job—look for the next episode. His apology also has no value to Mary. She is a lobbyist whose job has now been made harder due to his statement. Josh now has a label on him and every word from that point on will always be compared or related to his offensive statement, if the media decides to do so.

Some tips for reputation management:

1. Pre-plan to deal with crisis and opportunity before it happens
2. Do not avoid public criticism (openly acknowledge and proactively respond, do not let the media and public snowball assumptions and spread the fire)
3. Publish positive online articles and social media profiles that outperform negative results in search engines
4. Keep your cool (no Hulksmash nonsense)
5. Never forget ( learn from your mistakes, we are human)

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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Sun, 07 Oct 2012 11:30:11 -0500 http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/10/07/hulksmash__media_=_not_good_pr! http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/10/07/hulksmash__media_=_not_good_pr!

Commentary by Angelica Garcia-Hennings, Communications Intern of Gnosis Media Group. gnosisarts.com/home/Services

The video is a clip from the off-the-air television show "West-Wing", Season 1, Episode 1, 1999-2000, written and produced by Aaron Sorkin, directed by Thomas Schlamme and John Wells.

It identifies the importance of choosing your words wisely when addressing the public. Josh made an offensive statement about religious conservatives. He wanted a "cheap laugh" but his words ironically cost him a lot.

As PR professionals you must keep in mind that your words do not just represent you, but your company and people connected to you. William Shakespeare said "Words once spoken have wings." You cannot take back what you said - especially if the media gets a hold of your statements. Take every effort to be educated in the realms of the culture, demographic, class, and characteristics of the publics you are addressing. If unwise words slip from your mouth, the best you can do is manage the situation and steer away from the negativity.

The media tend to uphold themselves as a guardian of public interest. If words or body language are misinterpreted, your client's reputation is at risk. The media is democratic in terms of they allow the public to discuss and participate in deciding what your reputation will be. They will ultimately provoke the discussions and control the public's opinion. If you issue any kind of offensive statement, joke or gesture that is unclear the media may "fan the flames" of discord by taking sides, emphasizing prejudices, muddling the facts and peddling half-truths.

Josh's words potentially cost him his job—look for the next episode. His apology also has no value to Mary. She is a lobbyist whose job has now been made harder due to his statement. Josh now has a label on him and every word from that point on will always be compared or related to his offensive statement, if the media decides to do so.

Some tips for reputation management:

1. Pre-plan to deal with crisis and opportunity before it happens
2. Do not avoid public criticism (openly acknowledge and proactively respond, do not let the media and public snowball assumptions and spread the fire)
3. Publish positive online articles and social media profiles that outperform negative results in search engines
4. Keep your cool (no Hulksmash nonsense)
5. Never forget ( learn from your mistakes, we are human)

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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Are Free Press Release Submission Sites Worth It? Many small businesses utilize free press release sites to publicize their news, products and services. But how effective are these services? The answer is: It depends.

The effectiveness of a free press release depends primarily on what you are trying to accomplish. You need to first ask yourself: What is my main objective for submitting this press release. In our experience, free press release submission can be beneficial for achieving certain objectives, but not so effective for accomplishing others.

Some common publicity objectives are:

1. To obtain media coverage in a publication (whether digital or print)

2. To get a lot of traffic to the main business website

3. To be seen by relevant searchers

4. To rank highly for target keyword phrases in the search engines

5. To produce a conversion action of some sort (e.g.,  a signup, subscription, contacting the business, making a purchase)

6. To generate backlinks

7. To "fill your clips portfolio" for a client who has a relatively small budget

These aren't the only reasons why you might submit a press release, but these are a few of the more common ones. To understand the value of a free press release, you need to understand how well a particular submission service achieves one or more of the above objectives. In order to determine that, you need to know what you're getting in a particular free press release distribution service.

For example, some free press release sites are not Approved Google News Sites. This means that the press releases published to the site's newsroom do not get fed into the Google News Search Engine. As a result, your press release may not get very much visibility. Many journalists and bloggers utilize Google Alerts and receive press releases from Google News based on the keywords they are monitoring. So, if your press release doesn't get into Google News, your chances of being seen by a journalist are lower than those that do get into Google News. Therefore, if your goal is to get earned media coverage (see gnosisarts.com/home/PR_Dictionary), at the very least you will want to ensure that the site's pressroom is Google News Approved. You can do this by visiting Google News and typing in,

site:domain.name into the search bar (replace "domain.name" with the newsroom's actual domain name. It is also important not to put a space between the ":" and the "d" to get the most exhaustive results).

Our newsroom - Press Releases Online - is an Approved Google News Site, and all of our press releases get picked up by the Google News engine. (see s.gnoss.us/nshtn). Generally speaking, press release that make it into Google News will receive greater traffic than those which don't, another reason to verify Google News inclusion.

Moreover, if traffic is your goal, you'll want to find out whether the press release site offers any social media sharing. With most free press release services, they don't share your press release to Twitter, Facebook, or other social media sites. Social sharing can increase traffic to your press release, and by extension, to your website. It also increases the likelihood that other sites will link to your press release, according to recent studies. Our press release submission site, while not free, is very low-cost, and social media sharing is included in our options (see gnosisarts.com/home/Submit_Press_Release...).

If your goal is to be seen by people searching for your particular products or services, generally speaking free press release services won't get you there. This is because they don't usually come with an SEO option, and you need SEO in order to get your press release in front of people searching by keyword phrases. We offer a very inexpensive SEO press release service, that targets searchers by keyword you select. Currently we are offering a 50% discount on this service, if you purchase through our SaveLocal deal. Interestingly, in terms of media coverage, some of our SEO press releases do get the attention of niche bloggers and forum moderators. These bloggers and moderators often do their own independent write up of our clients, thus increasing their visibility.

Sometimes what you're looking for in a press release is a conversion. You may be publicizing a new product launch, for instance, and you want people to sign up to try it or contact you for more information. Free press release can work well for this, but not always. It depends on three factors: 1. how appealing the content is written and 2. whether the audience most likely to try the product sees the press release and 3. whether there is a compelling enough call to action within the press release.

Again, because free press release sites don't generally allow you the ability to target granularly enough, they often will fail to produce significant results. We offer a press release service where embed a QR Code into your press release. This helps facilitate conversions. This type of press release, combined with the SEO press release, both gets your news in front of interested searchers, and then motivates them to convert with the QR code once they arrive.

In sum, the effectiveness of a free press release submission service depends a good deal on what you want to get out of the service. As the familiar saying goes, "You get what you pay for." Free press releases are okay if you are just trying to generate a few backlinks to your website, or if you are working for a client who just needs to see a large volume of clippings on a shoestring budget. However, free press release sites generally won't take care of the heavy lifting of marcomm.

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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Sat, 14 Jul 2012 13:20:04 -0500 http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/07/14/are_free_press_release_submission_sites_worth_it http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/07/14/are_free_press_release_submission_sites_worth_it Many small businesses utilize free press release sites to publicize their news, products and services. But how effective are these services? The answer is: It depends.

The effectiveness of a free press release depends primarily on what you are trying to accomplish. You need to first ask yourself: What is my main objective for submitting this press release. In our experience, free press release submission can be beneficial for achieving certain objectives, but not so effective for accomplishing others.

Some common publicity objectives are:

1. To obtain media coverage in a publication (whether digital or print)

2. To get a lot of traffic to the main business website

3. To be seen by relevant searchers

4. To rank highly for target keyword phrases in the search engines

5. To produce a conversion action of some sort (e.g.,  a signup, subscription, contacting the business, making a purchase)

6. To generate backlinks

7. To "fill your clips portfolio" for a client who has a relatively small budget

These aren't the only reasons why you might submit a press release, but these are a few of the more common ones. To understand the value of a free press release, you need to understand how well a particular submission service achieves one or more of the above objectives. In order to determine that, you need to know what you're getting in a particular free press release distribution service.

For example, some free press release sites are not Approved Google News Sites. This means that the press releases published to the site's newsroom do not get fed into the Google News Search Engine. As a result, your press release may not get very much visibility. Many journalists and bloggers utilize Google Alerts and receive press releases from Google News based on the keywords they are monitoring. So, if your press release doesn't get into Google News, your chances of being seen by a journalist are lower than those that do get into Google News. Therefore, if your goal is to get earned media coverage (see gnosisarts.com/home/PR_Dictionary), at the very least you will want to ensure that the site's pressroom is Google News Approved. You can do this by visiting Google News and typing in,

site:domain.name into the search bar (replace "domain.name" with the newsroom's actual domain name. It is also important not to put a space between the ":" and the "d" to get the most exhaustive results).

Our newsroom - Press Releases Online - is an Approved Google News Site, and all of our press releases get picked up by the Google News engine. (see s.gnoss.us/nshtn). Generally speaking, press release that make it into Google News will receive greater traffic than those which don't, another reason to verify Google News inclusion.

Moreover, if traffic is your goal, you'll want to find out whether the press release site offers any social media sharing. With most free press release services, they don't share your press release to Twitter, Facebook, or other social media sites. Social sharing can increase traffic to your press release, and by extension, to your website. It also increases the likelihood that other sites will link to your press release, according to recent studies. Our press release submission site, while not free, is very low-cost, and social media sharing is included in our options (see gnosisarts.com/home/Submit_Press_Release...).

If your goal is to be seen by people searching for your particular products or services, generally speaking free press release services won't get you there. This is because they don't usually come with an SEO option, and you need SEO in order to get your press release in front of people searching by keyword phrases. We offer a very inexpensive SEO press release service, that targets searchers by keyword you select. Currently we are offering a 50% discount on this service, if you purchase through our SaveLocal deal. Interestingly, in terms of media coverage, some of our SEO press releases do get the attention of niche bloggers and forum moderators. These bloggers and moderators often do their own independent write up of our clients, thus increasing their visibility.

Sometimes what you're looking for in a press release is a conversion. You may be publicizing a new product launch, for instance, and you want people to sign up to try it or contact you for more information. Free press release can work well for this, but not always. It depends on three factors: 1. how appealing the content is written and 2. whether the audience most likely to try the product sees the press release and 3. whether there is a compelling enough call to action within the press release.

Again, because free press release sites don't generally allow you the ability to target granularly enough, they often will fail to produce significant results. We offer a press release service where embed a QR Code into your press release. This helps facilitate conversions. This type of press release, combined with the SEO press release, both gets your news in front of interested searchers, and then motivates them to convert with the QR code once they arrive.

In sum, the effectiveness of a free press release submission service depends a good deal on what you want to get out of the service. As the familiar saying goes, "You get what you pay for." Free press releases are okay if you are just trying to generate a few backlinks to your website, or if you are working for a client who just needs to see a large volume of clippings on a shoestring budget. However, free press release sites generally won't take care of the heavy lifting of marcomm.

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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0
Carving Out A Niche in Nonprofit Public Relations, Gnosis Media Group Continues to Grow Its Text-to-Donate Services Gnosis Media Group establishes new partnerships with Friends of the Bronx Charter School for Excellence, Ayden Rae Foundation, and Khadarlis of Sierra Leone to offer these nonprofits affordable Text-to-Pledge Services

By
– Gnosis Media Group, an Internet PR firm in the Greater NYC area, has been developing a text message donation service that has gained significant interest from nonprofits around the nation. The firm offers an effective alternative to conventional short code or SMS fundraising technology. Its service, said firm officials, fills a much-needed gap in the market.

 

"Startup, small and medium-sized nonprofits are just simply not being served by text to donate providers," said Barbara Bryant, chief of operations for Gnosis Media Group. "Our market research has found that most of the text donation providers are over-priced, have too much red tape, and impose too many rules and restrictions." 

 

With the news spreading that there is a text-to-pledge service available to small colleges and nonprofit organizations at a lower cost, partnerships with Gnosis Media Group for the service are rapidly increasing.

 

"Nonprofits need a mobile texting service that makes getting started easy on them," Bryant said. "Our developers have worked for the past year to provide development directors with a solution to these problems. And I'm confident we've built it. With one short one-page contract and two small payments, we can have you fully operational in less than 20 minutes."

 

The Friends of the Bronx Charter School for Excellence (FBCSE) (www.nycharities.org/donate/c_donate.asp?...), and Khadarlis of Sierra Leone (khadarlis.org) have recently started using the service. In fact, FBCSE utilized the service for the first time last night during a fundraiser. They garnered nearly $7200 in pledges in just three hours, according to a firm official.

 

The Ayden Rae Foundation (www.AydenRaeFoundation.org) is also utilizing the text to pledge service. The foundation provides support for life-saving efforts in advocating and improving patient care for HG patients, education, research, and reaching populations at risk from Hyperemesis Gravidarum. 

 

Vanessa Pack, chief executive officer, says that she researched for months trying to find affordable text donation solutions.

 

“We started looking into our options and mobile text-to-donate was something that really caught our attention. Sadly, we only considered this option for about 2 minutes because once we saw the cost to actually have such a campaign we knew we were out of our league. This was until we were introduced to Gnosis Media Group, they make it possible for smaller non-profits to benefit from this amazing mobile fundraising opportunity, they believe in truly helping others and aiding in seeing the non-profits they support, accomplish their mission and goals,” she explained.

 

“Gnosis Media Group has opened doors for the Ayden Rae Foundation that we once thought were not feasible,” said Pack. “The majority of Text-to-Give campaigns are limited by phone carriers to nonprofits with fundraising revenues over $500K.”

 

Blue Sky Bridge (blueskybridge.org) is one of the most influential family advocacy nonprofits in Colorado. The center provides support services to child victims of physical and sexual abuse and non-offending family members.

 

“For an organization our size, finding a cost-effective way to offer texting services for donations was incredibly important,” said Nia Wassink, development director for Blue Sky Bridge. “Working with Gnosis Media Group, we’ve been able to launch a text-to-pledge campaign that meets our organization’s needs, raises funds, and shows our tech-forwardness to supporters. They have been wonderful to work with and so supportive of our efforts!” 

 

For more details or to sign up for the service, visit the firm's website at gnosisarts.com/home/SMS_Fundraising or call 908.443.1665.

 

 

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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Wed, 23 May 2012 18:17:49 -0500 http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/05/23/carving_out_a_niche_in_nonprofit_public_relations,_gnosis_media_group_continues_to_grow_its_text-to-donate_services http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/05/23/carving_out_a_niche_in_nonprofit_public_relations,_gnosis_media_group_continues_to_grow_its_text-to-donate_services Gnosis Media Group establishes new partnerships with Friends of the Bronx Charter School for Excellence, Ayden Rae Foundation, and Khadarlis of Sierra Leone to offer these nonprofits affordable Text-to-Pledge Services

By
– Gnosis Media Group, an Internet PR firm in the Greater NYC area, has been developing a text message donation service that has gained significant interest from nonprofits around the nation. The firm offers an effective alternative to conventional short code or SMS fundraising technology. Its service, said firm officials, fills a much-needed gap in the market.

 

"Startup, small and medium-sized nonprofits are just simply not being served by text to donate providers," said Barbara Bryant, chief of operations for Gnosis Media Group. "Our market research has found that most of the text donation providers are over-priced, have too much red tape, and impose too many rules and restrictions." 

 

With the news spreading that there is a text-to-pledge service available to small colleges and nonprofit organizations at a lower cost, partnerships with Gnosis Media Group for the service are rapidly increasing.

 

"Nonprofits need a mobile texting service that makes getting started easy on them," Bryant said. "Our developers have worked for the past year to provide development directors with a solution to these problems. And I'm confident we've built it. With one short one-page contract and two small payments, we can have you fully operational in less than 20 minutes."

 

The Friends of the Bronx Charter School for Excellence (FBCSE) (www.nycharities.org/donate/c_donate.asp?...), and Khadarlis of Sierra Leone (khadarlis.org) have recently started using the service. In fact, FBCSE utilized the service for the first time last night during a fundraiser. They garnered nearly $7200 in pledges in just three hours, according to a firm official.

 

The Ayden Rae Foundation (www.AydenRaeFoundation.org) is also utilizing the text to pledge service. The foundation provides support for life-saving efforts in advocating and improving patient care for HG patients, education, research, and reaching populations at risk from Hyperemesis Gravidarum. 

 

Vanessa Pack, chief executive officer, says that she researched for months trying to find affordable text donation solutions.

 

“We started looking into our options and mobile text-to-donate was something that really caught our attention. Sadly, we only considered this option for about 2 minutes because once we saw the cost to actually have such a campaign we knew we were out of our league. This was until we were introduced to Gnosis Media Group, they make it possible for smaller non-profits to benefit from this amazing mobile fundraising opportunity, they believe in truly helping others and aiding in seeing the non-profits they support, accomplish their mission and goals,” she explained.

 

“Gnosis Media Group has opened doors for the Ayden Rae Foundation that we once thought were not feasible,” said Pack. “The majority of Text-to-Give campaigns are limited by phone carriers to nonprofits with fundraising revenues over $500K.”

 

Blue Sky Bridge (blueskybridge.org) is one of the most influential family advocacy nonprofits in Colorado. The center provides support services to child victims of physical and sexual abuse and non-offending family members.

 

“For an organization our size, finding a cost-effective way to offer texting services for donations was incredibly important,” said Nia Wassink, development director for Blue Sky Bridge. “Working with Gnosis Media Group, we’ve been able to launch a text-to-pledge campaign that meets our organization’s needs, raises funds, and shows our tech-forwardness to supporters. They have been wonderful to work with and so supportive of our efforts!” 

 

For more details or to sign up for the service, visit the firm's website at gnosisarts.com/home/SMS_Fundraising or call 908.443.1665.

 

 

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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Wikipedia's Tenuous Relationship With Public Relations Pros I chose this clip, quite honestly, because of our rocky history as a PR firm with Wikipedia ( see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Sunflowergal3... for starters). My wife said to me one day, while I was embroiled in heated debate with some Wikipedia editor, that Wikipedians remind her of the folks on the LemonLyman.com website. Ha! Ha! And this clip expresses the sentiment that I have felt towards the Wikipedia community, for some time. And not just me, but a lot of other people as well.

However, mainly I chose this clip because it is instructive on how to deal (or not to deal) with online social media communities as a public official.

The clip is instructive really for anyone who acts as a spokesperson or representative of a corporation, organization or institution that influences and interacts with the public online.

Oh, I could offer pages worth, tomes worth, of commentary comparing aspects of the dictatorial moderators of LemonLyman.com to the legalistic and hypocritical editors of Wikipedia. But ... I don't have enough space for a dissertation! Suffice it to say that every single emotion that Josh Lyman (played by Bradley Whitford) felt about the LemonLyman folks, I've felt about Wikipedians at one time or another.

Where did Josh go wrong? In short, where Josh Lyman went wrong was when he said to Donna Moss (played by Janel Maloney), "I think I need to clarify my previous post." Why? Because you can't reason with hypocrites, and you can't clarify arguments to irrationals.

But one public relations organization is determined to take a whack at it anyway. As you may or may not know, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) - one of the leading public relations trade associations in the UK - is currently engaged in an advocacy initiative with Wikipedia ( see conversation.cipr.co.uk/posts/jane.wilso...). CIPR's leadership is drafting best practice guidelines for PR professionals to work with Wikipedia editors. (More details on this can be found at uk.wikimedia.org/wiki/Draft_best_practic...). In the best traditions of our profession, CIPR is trying to forge a mutually beneficial relationship between PR consultants and Wikipedians. To do that, CIPR's engaging in public dialogue, rhetoric and debate in the hopes that such will win over the hearts and minds of the Wikipedia community and the leadership of the Wikimedia Foundation, Wikipedia's oversight organization.

To know why this initiative is so monumental requires one to understand just how much Wikipedians loathe any monied interest or ideological whitewashing influencing their encyclopedia. What progress they will make, of course, remains to be seen. Despite my own misgivings about the success potential of this initiative, I do admire the work CIPR is doing on this front. I also think that, on some level, the success or failure of this initiative will say just as much about PR's shortcomings, as it will about Wikipedia's.

My personal feeling is that, as C. J. Cregg (Alison Janney) said and our firm experienced, CIPR is going to run into "the cast from one flew over the cuckoo's nest" when they attempt "to clarify their previous posts."

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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Tue, 22 May 2012 10:36:51 -0500 http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/05/22/wikipedias_tenuous_relationship_with_public_relations_pros http://www.profnetconnect.com/gnosisarts/blog/2012/05/22/wikipedias_tenuous_relationship_with_public_relations_pros I chose this clip, quite honestly, because of our rocky history as a PR firm with Wikipedia ( see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Sunflowergal3... for starters). My wife said to me one day, while I was embroiled in heated debate with some Wikipedia editor, that Wikipedians remind her of the folks on the LemonLyman.com website. Ha! Ha! And this clip expresses the sentiment that I have felt towards the Wikipedia community, for some time. And not just me, but a lot of other people as well.

However, mainly I chose this clip because it is instructive on how to deal (or not to deal) with online social media communities as a public official.

The clip is instructive really for anyone who acts as a spokesperson or representative of a corporation, organization or institution that influences and interacts with the public online.

Oh, I could offer pages worth, tomes worth, of commentary comparing aspects of the dictatorial moderators of LemonLyman.com to the legalistic and hypocritical editors of Wikipedia. But ... I don't have enough space for a dissertation! Suffice it to say that every single emotion that Josh Lyman (played by Bradley Whitford) felt about the LemonLyman folks, I've felt about Wikipedians at one time or another.

Where did Josh go wrong? In short, where Josh Lyman went wrong was when he said to Donna Moss (played by Janel Maloney), "I think I need to clarify my previous post." Why? Because you can't reason with hypocrites, and you can't clarify arguments to irrationals.

But one public relations organization is determined to take a whack at it anyway. As you may or may not know, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) - one of the leading public relations trade associations in the UK - is currently engaged in an advocacy initiative with Wikipedia ( see conversation.cipr.co.uk/posts/jane.wilso...). CIPR's leadership is drafting best practice guidelines for PR professionals to work with Wikipedia editors. (More details on this can be found at uk.wikimedia.org/wiki/Draft_best_practic...). In the best traditions of our profession, CIPR is trying to forge a mutually beneficial relationship between PR consultants and Wikipedians. To do that, CIPR's engaging in public dialogue, rhetoric and debate in the hopes that such will win over the hearts and minds of the Wikipedia community and the leadership of the Wikimedia Foundation, Wikipedia's oversight organization.

To know why this initiative is so monumental requires one to understand just how much Wikipedians loathe any monied interest or ideological whitewashing influencing their encyclopedia. What progress they will make, of course, remains to be seen. Despite my own misgivings about the success potential of this initiative, I do admire the work CIPR is doing on this front. I also think that, on some level, the success or failure of this initiative will say just as much about PR's shortcomings, as it will about Wikipedia's.

My personal feeling is that, as C. J. Cregg (Alison Janney) said and our firm experienced, CIPR is going to run into "the cast from one flew over the cuckoo's nest" when they attempt "to clarify their previous posts."

0 Comments - Leave a Comment
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0