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Archives: March 2012

Generation Y: Brands Must Be Honest, Engaging

Anyone struggling to understand Generation Y, a.k.a. the millennials, and their relationship to brands has a lot of work ahead of him.

This generation is not defined by technology; it is very open, but distrustful; and it is at the center of a cultural shift. That info is among the findings in a new report by Onesixtyfourth, a New York-based brand consultancy. The sociological findings help explain the worldview of many millennials, defined as young people born between 1980 and1995.

To simplify: they like engaging brands, ones that are fluid and changing, and those that are open and honest with consumers. A brand has to stand for something. It has to own up to its mistakes. And it also has to want to make a difference in the world.

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@ESpitzer Probably Not the Real Spitzer

Late Friday afternoon news just broke that Keith Olbermann got fired again, this time from Current TV. Olbermann will be replaced by Eliot Spitzer, the former governor of New York and CNN host. However, Eliot Spitzer is probably not the person tweeting from the @ESpitzer handle referenced in Current’s press release announcement about this switch. There have been no new tweets on that account since 2010 and it includes posts such as, “Just kidding. Please help me gain followers.”

Viewpoint with Eliot Spitzer will debut tonight at 8p.m. ET. And Keith Olbermann is firing back with this statement (also available in parts on Twitter) promising legal action. Stay tuned to TVNewser for updates on this story.

Update: TVNewser’s Alex Weprin has confirmation on the mix up.

‘Bully’ Faces Obstacles As It Hits Theaters

A few weeks ago, we reported on The Weinstein Company’s efforts to have the R rated on its new documentary Bully overturned. Unfortunately, the company’s efforts were unsuccessful. But the whole situation may have only added to the buzz and anticipation surrounding the film, which opens today in New York and Los Angeles.

Unable to overturn the Motion Picture Association of America’s absurd decision (Hunger Games, in which a 12-year-old is speared to death is PG-13), The Weinstein Company is releasing it unrated.

Some major movie theaters have agreed to allow teens to view the film, with certain caveats. Celebs have been tweeting about the movie, have made PSAs, and otherwise bringing attention to the issue. And the media has flocked to the cause, reviewing the movie favorably and covering the making of the film extensively. (We were so happy to see this Nightly News segment and find out that one of the stars of the movie is now living elsewhere and loving life.)

While many are questioning the MPAA’s system, ultimately it’s the movie that could suffer. And that would be a shame.

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Beef Industry Rep Responds To Our ‘Pink Slime/Lean Finely Textured Beef’ Story

After reading our post on the controversy over “pink slime”/”lean finely textured beef,” a representative from the beef industry emailed us with a response.

Dan Casey, general manager at Nor-Am Cold Storage, told us we’ve got it all wrong. Nor-Am is a refrigerated warehouse where beef, pork, and poultry are packaged and ice cream is repackaged. Customers include big meat businesses like Cargill and Tyson.

“It’s not filler which would by USDA regulation require ingredient labeling. It’s beef 100%, about 20% more than ‘beef’ served at Taco Bell. It’s not made from scraps, but trimmings. This is a commodity not garbage. You have probably eaten it,” he wrote to us.

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The Most Popular PRNewser Stories of the Past Week

For ‘Malennials’: ‘Hip Hop Squares’ Coming to MTV2

MTV2, MTV’s sister station, is bringing back Hollywood Squares, but with a few changes.

Hip Hop Squares will debut Tuesday, May 22nd at 11 p.m. While it’s sticking with the Tic-Tac-Toe premise, the celebs in the squares will be a variety of “pop-culture personalities,” some more hip hop than others — Kat Graham, star of Vampire Diaries and singer of this crappy song; Biz Markie, singer of this great song; and Wu Tang’s Ghostface Killah among them

Paul Ricci, head of programming for MTV2, said this about the show in a statement: “Hip Hop Squares is a great representation of MTV2’s new brand filter to deliver smart, funny and relevant content that speaks directly to male Millennials’ – or ‘Malennials’ as we call them.” We hope you seriously don’t call anyone that.

Here’s the website and note the hashtag at the end of the promo.

Best Buy, BlackBerry Promise Change, But It Sounds Much the Same

In the face of changing consumer habits and shifts in mobile technology, two business giants — Best Buy and Research in Motion — have announced changes in their business strategies.

After a weak earnings report, Best Buy says it’s going to close 50 stores and cut 400 jobs. The news comes just a couple of months after a Forbes article ran with a headline “Why Best Buy is Going Out of Business… Gradually.” The article pointed to poor and annoying customer service along with some product flops (like 3D TV) and retail’s move online as reasons for Best Buy’s slow demise.

More recently, CNET called Best Buy a showroom for Amazon. Ouch.

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Research: Despite Access, People Still Don’t Trust the Government, Corporations

A new report from Hill+Knowlton Strategies shows that despite more access to information, people don’t trust what they hear from government and business, nor do they feel they can hold companies accountable.

H+K conducted a national survey to get the public’s opinion on issues where government and businesses intersect. The results were not good.

Ninety percent, or almost all, of the people said they would sooner trust a friend or family member on company information than the company itself.

If only we could be more like the Swiss.  They really trust their government.

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The Ticker: Foxconn; Greg Smith’s book; Hiring celebrities; Tech’s ‘confusion marketing’

Women Leaders in PR: EW‘s Beth Jacobson Brings Her Love of Music to Her PR Career

In our final installment of the Women Leaders series, we profile Beth Jacobson, senior director of PR at Entertainment Weekly. Jacobson started with a love of music and turned that into a PR career steeped in entertainment. But it wasn’t a straight line from college to career. Rather, Jacobson went with the thing she loved and ended up with a career she has always enjoyed.

We’d like to take a moment here to thank all of the women who participated in this series. PRNewser is always looking for good ideas so if you have any thoughts on what we should be doing, the comments section is open, you can contact us via Twitter, or email us at PRNewser@Mediabistro.com. We’re already cooking up a couple of thoughts for our next editorial series, so stay tuned.

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