Category Archives: News Blogs

Observations and Revelations from Social Media

Preparing to get into the swing of things, re: classes, I spent some of the weekend looking around at what is happening in social media. Not too much with direct PR implications, but did find a few interesting news items and activities.

The news of Michael Deaver’s passing was quite sad. Deaver, a master – if ever there was one, had been serving as vice chairman of Edelman in Washington, D.C. Politics aside, this is one person that had an enormous impact on media relations. He changed it dramatically. I so hoped our former students, a few of them working there now, would have the opportunity to get to know him. Our sympathies and condolences to Mr. Deaver’s family and those at Edelman. Continue reading


Name Change :: Re-branding :: University of Missouri – Rolla

One of my favorite examples for using a blog is where an organization employs them to gain input from their stakeholders. It is particularly rewarding to see dialog, about sometimes sensitive issues, being discussed so openly. I think it shows great transparency – even a bit of bravery – for an institution to follow this path.

In the past, I have written about Redesign: Why it is a good blog and the student initiative of BuzzFlood :: Dartmouth Blog/CMS PR Tactic.

Andrew Careaga, of higher ed marketing, recently shared news from his university, the University of Missouri-Rolla, about a new “name change” blog. See the release: UMR News and Research: Weblog shares info about potential name change.

Last October, UMR Chancellor John F. Carney III proposed a discussion about changing the university’s name to one that better reflects its role as a technological research university.

“The University of Missouri-Rolla is unique among the four University of Missouri campuses because of our focus as a technological research university,” Carney said. “We believe a more distinctive name would afford UMR several advantages in recruiting students on a national level.”

I’m enjoying watching the conversations. It is new, yet they are already getting traffic.

The most exchanges, thus far, have taken place on a post about Alumni survey results: 70% (of respondents) favor name change. You can tell that the respondents feel ownership of “their” university. It is fun to read.

Go over and check it out. Thanks to Andrew for the tip, too. I love these kinds of blogs.

Related Links:

Post Audio To Your Blog By Phone

UPDATE: The newer – and better – way to do this is by using

I have been aware of Blogger/Blogspot’s Audioblogger and LiveJournal’s Voice Post functions for some time. Simple to use and free (except for the phone call). Now those are built into their systems, so you are freed from giving out your login/password to your blog to a 3rd party.

I recently began watching the wp-hackers (WordPress developers) listserv and find it quite informative. It was there that I learned of the following…

…post audio
by phone to your WordPress, Blogger
LiveJournal and Drupal sites…

A new way to post audio files via phone to your WordPress and Drupal sites has now appeared. It is called PhoneBlogz. The downside is – they want/need your login/password for the process to work. Who is going to be willing give that ability to post directly to an unknown party, I wonder? But, you can create a limited access role/user with the ability to create an audio post, but not let it be posted to the blog, and this may be a workaround.

If they can come up with a plugin, that removes that unfortunate problem, then this could be a fun way to post snippets of info to your blog (length of possible audio posts vary in all of the options listed above).

I’m interested in practical business applications. Is there a PR possibility here? Ideas? I don’t know.

Citizen journalists (just as we’ve seen with video and images) may use the function and then one day an audio post will makes it to major media because an eye witness posted audio of some incident. It is bound to happen one day. NowPublic, for instance, offers the capability to publish news via a 1-800 number. Also, there is the idea of a citizen journalist posting observations of an event they are attending. I wouldn’t be surprised if some hard-core blogger did that this week from CES, the International Consumer Electronics Show.

Phone interviews could be posted. However, someone could also post a phone interview (with 3-way calling) and you would never know. That’s not too good, now is it? Think of the goober gotcha’s attempted by someone someday. That is bound to happen, too.

A radio station, with their own implementation of this, could allow listeners to send in requests, news tips, traffic alerts, questions, and more via their station’s site. Podcasters could accept questions and comments for inclusion in their programs. Shel and Neville have a way for listeners to leave comments for their podcasts already. They use (free) for their ‘comment line’ for listeners to share shout outs.
But what of other applications.

For news organizations, if you can post as a draft and someone can edit it before placing it on the site, then the process has even more value.

So, what tactics can you see this being used for in a productive positive way? Or, is this just another cute little toy that won’t catch on? Continue reading

Free Micah Garen!

From Nova Spivack, where he writes:

I worked with Micah at Earthweb. He’s a really great guy and needs our support. I’d appreciate it if you could call your local government representatives and ask them to assist in helping with his release. Ask them to contact Jenny Fu at the State Department. She’s the one monitoring the situation. (Could not find a listing for Jenny Fu on the State Department’s Web site.

U.S. House (.gov site)
U.S. Senate (.gov site)

Continue reading