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Emily's Blog for Journ. 4950

Emily's Blog for Journ. 4950

Who Owns Who?

With the uprising and rapid growth of international social media, there will not always be smooth sailing. With the fast advancements in the social media world, the likelihood for legal trouble is growing just as quickly. Twitter has taken a huge hit with legality issues, mainly with the focus on who “owns” specific Twitter accounts.

According to the article, in October 2010, Noah Kravitz quit his job at Phonedog.com, after four years.  While employed at Phonedog, Kravitz began posting on Twitter about the company, gaining a large amount of followers eager for employee feedback. When he left his job, Kravitz said PhoneDog told him he could keep his Twitter account in exchange for posting occasionally about the company.  However, eight months after Mr. Kravitz left, PhoneDog sued, saying the Twitter list was a customer list, and is seeking damages of $340,000.

Although this lawsuit is still pending, there are a number of eye brows being raised in regards to who “truly” owns Twitter accounts with company information on them. Companies are beginning to institute “social media policies” and emphasize the importance of social media protection.

In today’s society, with the popularity of Tweeting and posting, companies need to acknowledge the importance of growing company policies just as quickly as social media is growing. So before you post what you REALLY feel, think about if you in fact “own” your own Twitter account.

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category: Journalism Posts    

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Social Media Explorer

A common problem that we have discussed throughout the semester is when social media for a company is left in the hands of the “wrong people”. “Wrong people” being: young interns, people uneducated about social media, and those who do not consider the repercussions of bad social media representation. So, how can we fix this problem? Some say to be more cautious about who is given the responsibility of managing a social media site, but what if there was a way to wash away all worry? Social Media Explorer comes to the rescue in this (more often than not) situation.

Social Media Explorer is “a leading publishing platform for insights, opinion and learning around the world of digital and social media marketing, online communications, public relations and advertising” (Socialmediaexplorer.com). In layman’s terms, Social Media Explorer is the “go to” site for educating people about social media, and how to use to effectively. Jason Falls and Nichole Kelly launched this site in 2012, and it has been an instant success (mostly due to Twitter). Jason, having currently over 57,000 Twitter followers, gives credit to networking for the success of Social Media Explorer.

Since the beginning of the year, Social Media Explorer has gained rapid popularity. The blog has been rated No. 1. on the well respected Advertising Age Power 150 Marketing Blogs and is consistently regarded as one of the top social media marketing and general marketing blogs globally.

Social Media Explorer is active on Facebook, Twitter and their website. The website not only has their blog, but also a list of educational events, pictures and information on founders/developers and various articles related to social media marketing. Overnight success? Social Media Explorer was in the works for sometime, and developed by very experienced characters in the PR and advertising world, and is now considered as a KEY tool for companies seeking social media education.

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category: Journalism Posts    

Girls, we run this …

If you have listened to current music in the past year, you were bound to hear the song “Run the World” by Beyonce.

Here is a link if you haven’t : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBmMU_iwe6U

Why am I bringing up Beyonce in my blog which is focused on PR and social media?

In today’s society, women dominate the PR industry, making up nearly 85% of the industry. According to an article written by PR Daily, “Within the Public Relations Society of America, 73 percent of the membership is female, a spokesman said. The society includes 21,000 public relations and communications professionals nationwide, along with an affiliated student branch.”

With this obvious dominance, one may ask “why is there a lack of diversity?”

There have been several posed answers to this question. Maybe women are just smarter than men? Or women are more persuasive then men, women are more approachable then men, or the nurturing side of a woman makes them easier to trust. Whatever the answer may be, studies have shown that women excel in writing, presenting, event planning and technician needs, all of which are characteristics of a good Public Relations representative. The numbers don’t lie folks.

Although all of these answers could be true, it is still evident in our society that men dominate top positions in companies.Ergo, the Glass Ceiling. Women may compose the majority of the PR world, but we are still paid less than males in equal positions.

What this all means is that if you’re male, highly intellectual with really good organization and communication skills, plus the charisma and personality to make your presence felt, you’ve got a really good chance of making it big time in PR.

Maybe girls do “run the world” … well the PR world that is.

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category: Journalism Posts    

Domi-nose

As we all know, YouTube is a website where users can post, watch and share videos from around the world. What happens when technology and access to social media is put into the wrong hands? In the case of the Dominos pizza scandal, two immature employees decided to test their luck with their personal take on a funny YouTube video. What started as a “prank” turned into a catastrophic social media blunder. The two employees decided to video tape themselves in the kitchen, with cheese up their noses and putting mucus on the food and other disgusting acts. The video was then posted to YouTube, and went viral before being removed by Dominos. This incident not only created a huge scandal on YouTube, but other forms of social media as well. The popularity created an uproar on Twitter, Facebook and even a top hit on Google.

Although the gravity of this situation was extreme, Dominos handled the crisis in a very timely fashion. Their crisis management team not only had the video removed within 48 hours, but also fired the involved employees, pressed criminal charges and released an apologetic statement to the public. The CEO of Dominos took to Twitter and YouTube and posted on the company’s account, answering any questions or comments from customers.

Dominos handled this blunder with efficiency and professionalism. But was it enough? The repercussions of the video resulted in customers boycotting the food chain and being weary of health codes the company follows. The company assured customers that it was an isolated incident, and is not an accurate depiction of the company’s health codes.

After such a detrimental accident, how does a company recover from such bad representation? Dominos was quick to launch a number of promotional campaigns in order to counter the bad press.

Could this have been prevented? I’m sure the owner of that particular Dominos kicks himself everyday for hiring the two employees who deemed it necessary to film that video. In the reality of the situation, nothing could really have been done to prevent such a matter. Young people, video phones, and social media could be a recipe for disaster in any company, it’s a situational circumstance.

Will people ever forget about the “Domi-nose” mis-hap? My guess is that yes, this will be forgotten quickly, if it hasn’t been already. The matter will always be documented in history as a “social media blunder”, but the aftermath will without a doubt fade in time.

Pizza anyone?

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category: Journalism Posts    

Does age define experience?

Is age just a number? Or does our age, as young, recent grads, define the trust that our future employers invest in us?

Although, as 20+ year olds we view ourselves as “old”, to a boss who is 40+ years old, we are still babies. Does this view of being young affect how they treat us, or how much responsibility they think we can handle? More than likely, the answer is yes, especially when it comes to social media.

We are a technologically driven generation,with more familiarity with social media than someone who is over thirty. But being this technology savvy, does not mean that we utilize social media appropriately, hence the distrust from the older generations.

So, is it wrong to trust the online reputation of a company in the hands of fresh interns? I think that this could be a yes or no situation. With proper monitoring and pre-approved posts (as our guest speaker suggested), trusting interns to manage Facebook, Twitter, etc is only a helpful tool for a company. When posts become negative and damaging to a company’s reputation is when these tools are in the hands of the wrong people.

I believe that age does not define whether or not you should trust someone to manage a social media site, but only when monitored properly by the company.  Is it appropriate to say people are too old to manage social media? After all, isn’t age just a number?

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category: Journalism Posts    

Social Media: Helping or Hurting Public Relations

With the up and coming rise of various social media platforms and the exuberant popularity of sharing information on the web, is the need for public relations dwindling?

 

Public Relations tactics have always been used to get a name out there, create an image and then maintain a reputation. With the rising number of users of social media outlets, will a company’s need for a public relations become obsolete?  Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook have made it possible for virtually anyone to spread news and information to millions of people. The question remains: Is the information accurate? Is the information from a credible source? Are we as a society, becoming too dependent?

By giving companies and individuals the ability to broadcast so easily, is social media opening more doors for people to destroy the reputation of their company?

Facebook and Twitter promotes virtual interaction, decreasing internal communication within a company. Point being, are the number of followers and the number of likes on a page an accurate representation of actual interest/purchases in a company.

As a society, we also have to recognize the potential for these social media outlets to be a passing fad. Companies have been so dependent on using Twitter and Facebook to get a message across, what happens when people stop using them as frequently as they do now? According to a poll done by the Associated Press, ” 34% of Facebook users spend less time on the site than they did a year ago. Eighty percent say they have never bought a product or service as a result of an advertisement or comment on Facebook. And just 12% would feel safe making a purchase through the site” (http://mashable.com/2012/09/07/social-media-bad-marketing/).

As of right now, I am all for utilizing social media outlets for public relations, but my concern is that as a society, we’ve become too dependent on them. By eliminating direct communication between individuals, we have also eliminated the emotion and passion involved when conveying a message. This is where the concern of PR comes into play. Public Relations professionals  are well trained to ensure that companies/individuals are represented in a positive light, but with the dependency on social media, this positive light becomes a little darker. Facebook and Twitter are not able to help control what is being said about a company or person, so by putting information on full blast, you are giving strangers the ability to manipulate the information any way they choose. Therefore, enabling anyone to change or tarnish the reputation of a company or person.

 

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category: Journalism Posts    

Creeping or Cautious?

As a society, where do we draw the line between employers creeping or taking precaution, when it comes to social media? Is it an invasion of privacy, or just a wise way to “weed out” liability risks within a corporation? Some would say it’s an excellent way to learn about a potential employee and find out what they do outside of the work place. Although I feel that social media is a representation of ones’ self, I also feel that what one person chooses to do in their free time, is not necessarily an accurate picture of ones’ work ethic. Being a 22 year old college student on the verge of graduation, I have filtered what I do and do not post on Facebook, Twitter, etc. I view Facebook and Twitter as a sort of “online resume”, if you will. If I were interviewing a potential employee and decided to “creep” on their Facebook and found evidence that they live a lifestyle that would not represent my company in a positive light, then I would use that as a deciding factor not to hire that individual. After all, the key to running a successful business is to insure that your business is always viewed in the most positive light (Public Relations tactic).

So if “creeping” on new hire’s Facebook/Twitter is deemed acceptable, what’s the harm in demanding passwords for social media?

This is where I have an issue regarding privacy. It is one thing to view the “outside” of ones’ social media pages, and taking from it what one chooses. But to demand a password in order to see messages ect, is crossing this fine line. In my opinion, unless you’re interviewing for a position in NASA, secret service, military, or running for a political office… it really is no ones’ business who you message, or your browsing history. What’s next? … asking for a key to their apartment?… I suppose that gives a whole new perspective to “big brother is always watching”.

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category: Journalism Posts    

Most Recent Post

Who Owns Who?

With the uprising and rapid growth of international social media, there will not always be smooth sailing. With the fast advancements in the social media world, the likelihood for legal trouble is growing just as quickly. Twitter has taken a huge hit with legality issues, mainly with the focus on who “owns” specific Twitter accounts. […]

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