It was called Global PR Blog Week and it was a lot of PR pros (and wannabees) kvetching about the business and how everything has changed. I can’t imagine a worse combination of ingredients: PR and blogging! That said, I can’t tell if these folks are on to something or if they are just complainers who can’t get work. I suspect there is some good information here for people who have to deal with PR folks. Lots of dubious idealism, though.


Since the Internet is becoming the default news source for millions, that means we, as communicators, increasingly need the ability to easily create, manage, distribute, and measure our messages in order to contribute directly, without intermediaries, to building, influencing and perhaps controlling our reputation — or our clients’ reputations – online.

Hence, all the interest here in blogs and Internet PR Tools. But as an industry, many people in PR are still behind the times in their use of technology to support their objectives.

  1. And what’s wrong with a little dubious idealism? Kvetching and navel-gazing are mainstains of blogging so we weren’t really breaking any conventions other than the overall intentions and topics coverred. Whether we’ve succeeded or failed in our goals is really a moot point since it is inevitable that the PR-industry will focus more and more energies into understanding the blogosphere and bloggers – with the inevitable missteps along the way.

    Besides, some of us blog to blog and attempt to contribute ethically and honestly, sticking to topics we’re familiar with and passionate about. I seem to remember someone who thought blogs weren’t going to last…yet here they are taking sides in a WordPress vs. Movable Type debate? There’s nothing saying PR and blogging can’t mix but I think it’s better to understand the medium and its “cultures” before enterring into something like an “Us vs. Them” type discourse in a forum/arena as public as the blogosphere. But, like the quote above points out, many in the PR-industry are clueless about where technology trends are taking them and I agree that there will probably be numerous “WordPress vs. Movable Type” psuedo-debates between the uninitiated and uneducated. And, if past history is any indicator, I doubt that bloggers would sit idly by and not become involved – most likely they’d kvetch and complain through their blogs.

  2. Jeremy says:

    Oy, John, what’s wrong with a little kvetching? It cleanses the soul, it’s makes one all-right, it puts things into perspective. What, you want me to have an ulcer?

    As one of the PR pros that participated, I have to say that you are right. There is some great information to be gleaned from the Global PR Blog Week. Just like there’s some great information to be gleaned from the Internet, magazines, newspapers – as consumers and readers, we just choose which parts to read and which parts are relevant for us.

    Plus, what’s wrong with youthful idealism? Isn’t that what makes our country great? What’s wrong with trying to make our industry better, to try to fix what’s happened in the past and to make PR more effective, more concentrated, less intrusive?

  3. Trevor Cook says:

    Not being American I don’t know what kvetching means, but I assume its bad. Trashing other people’s professions is of course one of the popular pastimes of modern life.
    We all know lawyer jokes by the hundred. In fact, we used to call the IT guy ‘mirrors’ because everytime we pointed to a problem he said “I’ll look into it”.
    IT has such a bad reputation with the general populace because its public forums are usually just blue sky and jesuitical debates about the modern equivalent to the old angels on the head of a pin dilemma. All that my code’s bigger than your code locker room drivel that geeks drone on with.
    Meanwhile, real people have to deal with costly, flaw-ridden and underperforming hardware and software. Talk about a PR problem.
    Now there’s a real opportunity for a little honest public reflection on how an industry might address its problems. You guys don’t have to beat up on yourselves. You could stay idealistic about your profession – why not?
    But you could try and broaden the debate out. You could ask yourselves can we get over this closed loop problem we have where we just have geeks talking to geeks about the geek fundamental.
    We tried to do that with global PR blog week – it worked, it attracted a lot of attention. Quite a bit from outside the PR profession. Not all of it positive – but that’s part of the process too.
    So kvetching – is it geek jargon? So much to learn, sigh.

  4. Matthew says:

    “I suspect there is some good information here for people that have to deal with PR folk.”

    Oh good. Let’s start this debate again. Do journalists really need PR folks. We should try it sometime, John. How about for a month or two, we let all the in-house product marketing managers and engineers out there have free access to your email, phone and now, your blog. Let’s see how well that works and if you don’t miss the PR community in the end. My hat is off to the folks who organized the GlobalPRBlogWeek. It was a great venue for discussing how to use this new communication medium to SERVE the journalist community.


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