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Archives: March 2008

Arianna Huffington’s Dick Wiki


There’s not a lot of dick on Arianna Huffington’s Dickipedia just yet. We suspect there will be as contributors tap out their frustrations with pop culture, sports, and political icons on the new wiki from 23/6, a co-production of the Huffington Post and IAC.

Welcome aboard, you SEO-optimized product and future headache for command-and-control publicists.

At press time, neither Huffington or IAC’s Barry Diller were considered at all dickish.

For more on the blogistress, check out “Citizen Huff” in today’s Times.

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Riding the Spitzer News Cycle (Part II)

girl_120.jpgWe’ve already talked about one company looking to ride the Spitzer news cycle: Amie Street, the online music company where call girl Kristen’s music has been selling briskly.

But another, (even better?) example crossed our inbox this afternoon, courtesy of Four Corners Communications president Drew Kerr.

It seems a minor league baseball team, the Macon (GA) Music is hosting an Eliot Spitzer night, where, “anybody named Eliot, Spitzer or Kristen, the alleged call girl, will get $1 off admission.”

But it doesn’t end there: “The team also plans to give out a one-night stay at Washington, D.C.’s swanky Mayflower hotel, where Spitzer’s alleged misdeeds are said to have happened.”

Only in America, folks.

Blogging for Book Deals

(image cred)

Has a trend officially hit the mainstream once it’s reached the NY Times? We think so.

The Times Allen Salkin has an article out on bloggers and book deals, featuring mediabistro’s own Galleycat blogger Ron Hogan. “I was shocked and amazed that they got that much money for a concept that Martin Mull had written a book on back in 1985,” Ron told the Times.

That quote was in reference to Christian Lander of landing a $300k book deal.

While literary agents are scouring the web for potential blogger book deals, they are not always a success. For example, “ spawned the book, ‘The Gawker Guide to Conquering All Media,’ which has sold fewer than 1,000 copies since its release in October 2007,” according to Salkin.

We mention this on the heels of two PR book releases this week. Ogilvy’s Rohit Bhargava published Personality Not Included: Why Brands Lose Their Authenticity And How Great Companies Get it Back.

In a clever way to promote the launch, Rohit issued an open call on his blog to ask for any blogger to send him a five question interview that he would personally respond to. So far he’s done over 57 interviews.

Meanwhile RLM PR president, author and pundit on “media culture and hype,” Richard Laermer sent PRNewser an advanced copy of his next book, 2011: Trendspotting for the Next Decade. We’ll read it soon, Richard! It is now available on

The Economist Tops AdweekMedia’s 2008 Hot List

AdweekMedia, the folks behind Adweek, Mediaweek and Brandweek have put out their annual Hot List, which honors, “the publications and creative talents that keep consumers coming back to the newsstands.” Like the good bloggers we are, we adhered to today’s embargo after receiving a copy of the list on Friday.

The Economist jumped to #1 on this year’s list, which is judged by a variety of metrics, including, “ad page and revenue gains; performance within a magazine’s competitive category; circulation gains; interviews with media buyers and consultants, and AdweekMedia’s own editorial judgment.” In addition, Paul Rossi and editor John Micklethwait took home the “Executive Team of the Year” award. won “Magazine Website of the Year,” as traffic increased 48% in 2007 to 6.3 million monthly unique users.

Surprisingly, all publications in the top 10 had advertising revenue gains of at least 10% in 2007.

Full rankings after the jump.

Read more

Getting 70% of the Story

erick-schonfeld.jpg Former Business 2.0 writer Erick Schonfeld dropped a long weekend post yesterday on his first six months blogging with Michael Arrington at TechCrunch.

As we’ve thought, it seems those guys don’t sleep much. According to Schonfeld, “Michael literally never sleeps. It is really unhealthy.”

A PR related takeaway, amongst Erick’s other points:

Our philosophy is that it is better to get 70 percent of a story up fast and get the basic facts right than to wait another hour (or a day) to get the remaining 30 percent. We can always update the post or do another one as new information comes in. More often than not, putting up partial information is what leads us to the truth – a source contacts us with more details or adds them directly into comments.

This could be scary news, especially if you’re client is involved in a “70% post.” On the other hand it also gives you an opportunity to correct the situation in a much more direct way than in other publications.

I must admit, we sometimes use this tactic at PRNewser, if we think we are “almost there” with a post. It never fails that once the post is up, you’ll hear from someone with more info.

What’s your take?

You Are Now Entering: The Whopper Bar


Man, ordering a Whopper can be sooo boring. Not anymore, according to Janet Adamy in today’s Wall Street Journal. Burger King plans to introduce “Whopper Bars” that will offer as many as ten types of Whoppers.

Russ Klein, Burger King’s president, global marketing, strategy and innovation told Adamy, “It’s our way of stepping into the future. The Whopper is arguably a trademark that is bigger than Burger King itself.”

The Burger King PR team sure got some WSJ love today. Looks like they gave Adamy the “exclusive,” as no other media currently have the story. And if they do, they’re linking to the Journal, just like us.

The best part about all of this? “Mr. Klein says it isn’t ‘unthinkable’ that it would offer beer at the new BK bars, particularly in some overseas markets where it already sells alcohol.”

BusinessWeek + Videogames = Huh?


BusinessWeek has launched an arcade. Yes, you are reading that right. The arcade is, “a collection of some of the Web’s best free, independently produced games.”

FishbowlNY caught up with editor John Byrne who said:

The buzz has been great. We were picked up by the leading games blogs and newswires — and mainstream press sources such as Portfolio and — which were pretty much all supportive of the venture. Most gratifyingly, we weren’t just praised for the launch of the feature, but for the smart curation of the Arcade as a whole.

Buzzy? Yes. Happy readers? Jury still out. BusinessWeek Innovation Channel Helen Waters has already responded to some negative comments (scroll down) on the site.

Pogue On PR and “Web 2.0″

NY Times tech reporter David Pogue wrote yesterday about his experience at a recent PR industry event he was invited to speak at.

An emcee asked the following question before he spoke: “Why isn’t your company (or client) taking advantage of Web 2.0?”

Some of the answers he heard were:

“Not enough money.” “Don’t understand it.” “No technical resources.” “Not enough manpower.” “No visible return on investment.” “Fear of ridicule.” “Fear of slander.” “Fear of permanence.” “Fear of the public running amok.”

Fear is definitely a factor in many of the situations I’ve run into. Recent events like a Cisco employee blogger getting the company sued don’t exactly help either.

There are also other industries, such as pharmaceuticals, where it is virtually impossible to engage in an online conversation about certain topics.

When you can have fun is where it works, like this Ketchum campaign for Dr. Pepper offering everyone in American a free can of DP if Guns N’ Roses puts out their Chinese Democracy album out in 2008. The album has been “in the works” for over a decade. They even got Axl Rose himself to acknowledge them on the Guns ‘N Roses website.

Palm & Dell Make PR Hires


Several high profile tech PR hires were announced this week. First, Valleywag reports that Lynn Fox, head of Mac PR, whill jump ship to Palm. “…she’s made the move surprisingly quietly; her name has yet to appear on any press releases,” they say.

Next up, our sister blog AgencySpy reports that the Dell/WPP Group “DaVinci” integrated marcom bohemoth has hired former Fleishman-Hillard partner Kelly McGinniss to head up PR out of a SF office with 70-100 other staffers.

The Ticker: Omnicom Names Digital CEO, Starting an Agency on the Cheap…