Friday Wrap #119: PR Wikipedia guide, bloggers as journalists, TwitPic lives, interactive packaging


Flickr image—“Wrapped Up Dinosaurs”—courtesy of Matt Brown
Welcome to the Friday Wrap, my weekly summary of stuff I’ve found in the last seven days that didn’t grab the big headlines but is still important, interesting, and/or worthwhile for communicators and marketers…and this week ranks up there among the most interesting collections of stories since I started the wrap. I collect these on my link blog, which you’re welcome to follow.

News

IPR releases Professional’s Ultimate Guide to Wikipedia—William Beutler has been one of the key thought leaders when it comes to ethical PR engagement with Wikipedia. His company, Buetler Ink, doesn’t create or update Wikipedia articles for clients; it helps clients navigate Wikipedia by adhering to the rules. Now, Beutler has produced a free manual in PDF format, “providing a concise yet detailed overview of the landscape of Wikipedia rules as they apply to PR efforts.” The 20-page manual is available from the Institute for Public Relations. Read more

Facebook listens to users, tweaks algorithm—Among the categories of complaints critics level at Facebook, the updates that show up in your News Feed is at the top, particularly the number of older, irrelevant posts that appeared in the curated collection users see. The complaints were many and frequent, and Facebook has responded with an algorithm adjustment announced yesterday. “Facebook will look more at trending topics and the rate at which people are interacting with a post to determine what to put in your News Feed,” according to the Huffington Post. Read more

Bloggers are journalists (in New Zealand, at least)—A New Zealand High Court has ruled that a blogger can be defined legally as a journalist; the website or blog to which she or he publishes can be classified a news medium, even if it isn’t part of a mainstream media outlet. The case involved a defamation action against Cameron Slater, a blogger who had written about businessman Matthew Blomfield. Because he wasn’t a journalist, a lower court ruled Slater had to reveal his sources, but he appealed to the High court, which ruled that “the definition (of a journalist) does not impose quality requirements and does not require the dissemination of news to be in a particular format.” Read more

Do what’s right, earn tons of social buzz—When the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings reinstated Adrian Peterson after allegedly abusing his 4-year-old son, Radisson Hotels dropped its sponsorship of the team. Companies make these moves in order to minimize the damage from being associated with a suddenly-tained brand or individual. But Radisson got an unexpected benefit from the move. According to Amobee Brand Intelligence, the hotel chain earned enough social, Web, and mobile impressions to make up 58% of its “total online consumption” (impressions plus mentions) for the last 90 days. If that trend held up, two days in September would account for 81% of the hotel’s total online consumption for the entire summer. According to one Amobee executive, “Radisson gets a (full) quarter’s worth of free publicity for the move, all because they were the company during this current NFL (PR) crisis willing to take the most definitive stand against domestic violence.” Read more

TwitPic lives—I reported here in an earlier Wrap that TwitPic—the original service that let you post a photo to Twitter—was being shut down as part of a trademark battle. Now comes word that they’ve been acquired and will live on. More details are reportedly forthcoming. The site is currently fully active with no notice of an impending closure. Read more

Proposed law would impose social media screening on job candidates needing security clearances—A U.S. congressman has introduced The Enhanced Security Clearance Act of 2014, which would use a social media screening to identify security risks in order to prevent them from obtaining security clearances. Pennsylvania’s Mike Kelly singled out whistleblower Edward Snowden in the same sentence as Aaron Alexis, the Navy Yard shooter. The bill, Kelly said, “will update government background checks to include an applicants’ publicly available electronic data including social media accounts such as Facebook and Twitter.” The Electronic Frontier Foundation called it “the wrong approach.” Read more

Al Jazeera launches “news as a platform” for Millennials—AJ+ is a new global news platform from Al Jazeeera targeting viewers between 18 and 34. The platform will focus on “engagement, platform and editorial,” according to Riyaad minty, who runs engagement for the platform. “When we talk about AJ+ we talk about it not as a video channel, not as an app, we talk about it as an experience,” he said. The app is designed around small nuggets of content for a mobile, continuously connected audience who are in the habit of engaging via social media. It delivers news via cards, each of which is based around an interactive element. Stories are formed in “stacks” of cards, which users can follow to get notified of updates. Sounds like a model worth emulating in content marketing efforts. Read more

Trends

New anonymous app aims for credibility—The app Secret, which lets people post rumors and gossip anonymously, has grown popular (it was used recently by a gunman involved in a standoff with police), but it is subject to a lot of false rumors to which people who know the truth don’t respond. What’s the point? They can’t use their real names and responding anonymously doesn’t offer up credentials that support the fact that they know the real story. Enter Heard, where anyone can post articles with their real names or anonymously. With a gamification twist, though, users earn digital badges to prove things about themselves (where you work, where you went to school), allowing them to post anonymously wile still providing their credentials. The entry solves problems with earlier anonymous apps while bolstering the the category’s legitimacy in the social networking space. Read more

The first “thinkable” hits the market—You’ve heard of wearables, but Muse is a thinkable. The band that goes around your head reads your brain waves while you interact with an app that helps you meditate, which can lower blood pressure, relieve migraines, reduce the risk of heart attacks, ease anxiety and depression, and improve creativity. Using the $299 device takes only three minutes each day. Read more

Brands add interactivity to packaging—Adding an interactive social dimension to packaging creates a more physical connection with customers, leading marketers to find ways to create a campaign that brings packaging and interactivity together. One example: Cocal-Cola’s #ShareACoke campaign, which swapped the company logo with any of the 250 most popular names in the U.S. Customers also can design their own bottle on the campaign’s microsite and download or share the results via their own social channels, along with the site’s gallery. Other companies engaging in interactive packaging are Dole, which has added a QR code and a suggestion for using or consuming its bananas to the sticker applied to each banana; and Kraft and Pepsi, which have added Augmented Reality to their packaging. Read more

Research

Social media is the most effective channel for B2B—Seventy-nine percent of B2B marketers say social media is an effective marketing channel. According to the study from Omobono, Circle Research and The Marketing Society, 38% of respondents would spend more on social media and 39% would turn to apps or optimization. Over half spend nothing on mobile channels, with only 7% of marketing budgets earmarked for mobile among marketers who have adopted social as a channel. Results of the study are contained in an infoposter. Read more

Social media accounts for most of small business media spending—Social media is the top media platform for small and medium-sized businesses. A report from BIA/Kelsey found that 74.5% of SMBs (those with fewer than 100 employees) currently use social media to advertise or promote their businesses, up 2.8% from 2013. Small businesses spend an average of 21.4% of their overall media budgets on social; that’s more than they spend on any other media platform. Read more

Mobile video viewership grows 127% in just one year—Smartphones and tablets are everywhere, and people are using them to watch video. Mobile video viewership more than doubled in the last 12 months, accounting for over 25% of all online video viewing. Ooyala’s Q2 Global Video Index Report found mobile video viewership rose 127% in the last year and 400% in the last two years. Cisco predicts mobile video traffic could represent nearly 70% of global Internet traffic by 2018. Most of what mobile viewers is considered video snacking; viewers spent 45% of their time watching videos six minutes or shorter. Read more

Print readers recall more than online readers—A University of Houston study has found people who read printed news publications read and remember more than those who get their news online. It’s not the first study to note print’s advantages in recall; rather, it bolsters evidence that print’s performance is better than online’s. “Online readers are apt to acquire less information about the news than print readers because of the lack of saleience cues,” according to Arthur D. Santana, an assistant professor in the Jack. J. Valenti School of Communication at UH and principal investigator of the study, “Print Readers Recall More Than Do Online Readers,” published in Newspaper Research Journal. “Since online story placement and prominence are in a constant state of flux, readers are less apt to register which are the important stories of the day.” Read more

Showrooming a threat? Not so much, according to study—Consumer electronics retailers rail against showrooming, the act of checking out a product in a store but then buying it for less online. In fact, according to a study released by communications agency Citizen relations, nearly two-thirds of U.S. consumers do online research, then buy the product in a brick-and-mortar store. They opt for the in-store purchase because they want to see and feel the product (61%), avoid online shipping fees (47%) and want that instant gratification of getting the product right now (46%). Read more

Mobile

Job hunting goes social with Coffee app—Oft-cited research finds that job hunters learn about the jobs they wind up getting from “weak connections.” That’s the idea behind Coffee, where job hunters share information about their experience and interests, creating networks to support their employment-seeking efforts. Read more

But Wait! There’s More!

  • Museum of public relations opens; Bernays papers are its cornerstone Read more
  • Facebook under fire for enforcing “real name” policy Read more
  • A nice list of sources of free images for your blog or website Read more
  • 10 pointers for navigating the measurement maze from PRNewser Read more