Digging Heroes
January 31, 2007, 12:24 pm
Filed under: Heroes, mulitmedia, NBC, TV

I am really enjoying the Heroes experience; not just the show, which has an X-files meets comic books feel, but also the online experience which NBC is handling really well. Don’t know who the media agency is that they are using, but they are doing a masterful job of text messaging engagement, interviews, supplemental creative in multiple media, and on, and on, and on…If you like the show and haven’t gone to the website you must check it out now….

and submit a job application to Primatech…simple but cool stuff

IR/PR Professionals and new media
October 13, 2006, 1:28 pm
Filed under: media, podcasting, Podcasts, TV, Videocasts

Had the opportunity to join a panel moderated by Dana Gardner of Interarbor Solutions on the topic of RSS, and new media for an audience comprised primarily of PR and IR professionals. It is still surprising how much disparity there is between the PR professionals who have embraced new media and the laggards. Sure, I get the cultural issues of a profession that is built around language and people skills colliding with technology. And, yes, I understand that there is resistance in some circles to adopt technologies that seem to hand control of information flow over to the consumer,….but your not going to stop the transition. The traditional media outlets are losing viewers or subscribers at alarming rates, and consumers are becoming more technically savvy by the day. The technology is also becoming more approachable by the day, so blogs, RSS feeds and news readers are becoming more mainstream tools instead of serious information consumers….

Do communications professionals still need to use other vehicles to reach less tech savvy audiences? Of course, absolutely, but when 31% of the internet connected audience is using RSS, there’s an enormous opportunity missed if you can’t master the technology to get your message out through this new information channel. When every iPod toting business woman, can listen to their news and entertainment in a podcast or portable movie, you have just lost a meaningful vehicle if you can’t get on board.

One audience member commented “…but my audience wants to read a couple of paragraphs in a press release…” (rather than get their information through a podcast). If you’re sure that’s the only way that your audience wants to get its information, stay the course….

Many, many communications professionals have continued to evolve and have become new media mavens, but the disparity from earliest adopted to stubbornest luddite is remarkable.

Culture of Participation
September 26, 2006, 3:48 pm
Filed under: media, radio, TV

When does the culture of participation go too far?
We have all experienced participatory entertainment (American Idol, etc.) and participatory journalism (all the fine and not so fine blogs out there…), hey we even have particpatory heckling on such fine institutions as WEEI radio’s Whiner Line and its like, but does every supposed news program really need to have audience participation? If we are going to invite listeners to call in or send e-mail on almost every news program of note, how much news goes uncovered. This all started (my elders may correct me if I’m not going back far enough) with 60 Minutes, which in its earliest days began reading comments and questions from its viewers…. this stuff is not news people! Of course the institution should rightfully be credited to a much older media,…periodicals and newspapers where letters to the editor allow the ultimate form of audience participations…one which can also be ignored

I don’t want to spend 30 seconds much less the 5 minutes or more some “news” programs devote to listener/viewer participation. Mainstream media is increadingly incorporating viewer participation into its programs to emulate the qualities of blogs and other citizen media, but TV and Radio are simply not structured for it…you can’t escape when some idiot rants for 3 minutes about his own ignorance. The result is increasingly irritating mainstream news programming, instead of compelling content.

TV and radio producers – stick to your media’s strengths. Provide high quality journalism. Do your homework. Don’t invite every opionated windbag to fill programming for you with little or no editorial control. The beauty of blogs and especially the comments sections of great blogs is simple; the audience controls the flow. Viewer/listener participation in mainstream TV/Radio has the opposite effect, the listener is powerless…except to change the channel. Enough call-in segments already.