I absolutely love Stewart Lee. His Comedy Vehicle on BBC Two is one of the funniest things on TV. He’s also excellent at neatly skewing any particular area he turns his attention to. And his piece one online marketing bod trying to make the Stewart Lee brand more in-tune with social media is hilarious.
Having sat through several meetings and pitches that have gone along similar lines, I’m tempted just to whip out this video rather than spend half an hour explaining why certain social strategies won’t work.
Nearly ten years ago, the way I first knew about the 9/11 attacks was when I received a text from a friend telling me to turn on the TV. Today, I logged onto Facebook when I woke up, after a push notification to my phone, and saw my news feed filled up with statuses bout the death of Osama bin Laden. Same device, a very different way of receiving the news.
For the last week, like many people I suspect, I’ve been semi-permanently watching the ongoing situation in Japan, from the early hours of the earthquake and tsunami, through to the current nuclear and humanitarian crisis. It’s hard not to get through an edition of the news without a lump in the throat many evenings at the moment.
From a grimly professional point of view, though, I found it fascinating that during the earthquake, the immediate response of some people was to grab a video camera and start filming, before posting the footage to YouTube or other social media sites.
Those of you who follow me on other networks will have seen that a few weeks ago my co-host on the twofootedtackle podcast, Chris Nee, and I decided to call it a day for the pod.
I posted a detailed explanation on TFT as to why we were hanging up our microphones, but the basic and overriding reason was a lack of time.
It’s also, if I’m honest, the reason why this place looks a little neglected. I could use Tumblr or Posterous (both great platforms, I hasten to add) but I quite like to take my time to explain and think about issues. And much as I love Twitter, it doesn’t allow for much in-depth analysis or nuance in 140 characters.
Social media’s pretty well established now but the question of who should take ownership for activity is no closer to being answered. PR Week have recently been attempting to answer this, making an argument for a host of different disciplines, while Econsultancy have argued that social media shouldn’t be owned by a PR or ad agency. I tend to agree with them.
Social media is a multi-faceted beast. It can be used to break stories, promote campaigns and brands, deal with reputation management, drive sales, and nurture and develop an enthusiastic community of fans and followers.
A couple of weeks ago Chris Lee from Run Marketing kindly invited me to speak at an event he was running at Speed Communications on podcasting. It was a fascinating evening and I learned a fair bit from Chris, Kelvin Newman and Andy White, the other speakers. I focused more on the editorial side of what makes a good podcast. You can see my slides below.
On the night Chris suggested podcasting is something of a forgotten or neglected medium and I’d go along with this. Video is easier to produce than it’s ever been but it still demands your eyeballs, which is a crucial difference.
I’ve never wished to be particularly down on one paper, so apologies to the paper of my hometown, the Express and Echo, but because I probably visit their website more than most, they probably get a lot of criticism. And a couple of days ago they provided another example of why local newspapers are in all sorts of trouble.
On Tuesday, Exeter City met Plymouth Argyle in their first competitive meeting in eight years. Not the most significant fixture in a busy evening of football, but in local sport terms this was as big as it’s likely to get.
Who would have thought bath screens could start a good discussion on social media? On a National Union of Journalists mailing list, of the reasonably high-up members shared with us an email he’d rather mischievously sent to a DIY store asking for their review rates after they invited him to write a customer review of his purchases.
Although done in semi-seriousness, I don’t necessarily agree that it’s an area where the NUJ should be getting involved in. For me, although the quality of reviews can be variable to say the least, they are still a useful service and the company should be congratulated for trying to engage in a form of a two way conversation and even create a community, of sorts.
I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve read an article proclaiming the death of blogging, for reasons too numerous to mention. But while the independent blogging arena is constantly in a state of flux as it defines itself (mixing Heraclitus and Sartre, if you will), these last couple of weeks have shown how vital and how vibrant blogging can be when applied by the mainstream media.
Like an ageing celebrity, some web companies, startup or otherwise, feel like they’ve been around forever and you assume they’re in rude health until you see a news story flash up that they’ve died.
And then you remember they exist, feel a bit sad, relive the happy memories and move on.
12seconds.tv, sadly, is that aging celebrity.
At that start of the week, the video microblogging (or microvlogging, I suppose) site announced it was to close later this month. It It was lacking: Lack of a revenue model, lack of time, lack of interest all seemed to conspire to kill it off.