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Posts Tagged ‘Fast Company’

How Bad Was Uber’s ‘Apology?’

You all saw Uber CEO Travis Kalinick‘s version of an “apology” earlier this week. We gave the company’s official response to its SVP of business’s “we will DESTROY you and your family” threat to Pando’s Sarah Lacy a D+ for minimal effort, and Lacy herself agreed, telling CNN that the company needs “accountability.” We take that to mean actions rather than empty words, but today a Bloomberg report covered by Mashable strongly indicated that the guilty party, Emil Michael, won’t be going anywhere.

Today our friends at Fast Company gave us their hot take on the story, and it’s quite amusing. Take it away, Jason Feifer:

Have to agree with him here: an apology made via a series of tweets reads, “do I REALLY have to do this?”

We have no idea what additional steps the company will take since Kalanick has been silent over the past couple of days. In the meantime, we’ll make a point of NOT waiting for more expert commentary from one Ashton Kutcher.

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The Only #AlexFromTarget Lesson Worth Learning

Here’s a super-quick clip from Fast Company in which Senior Editor Jason Feifer explains the only real lesson brands can learn from Alex and the brouhaha that followed his viral breakthrough. Stick with it for a minute:

Unlike Dorothy, most people on the Internet have no interest in seeing the man behind the curtain. We literally DO NOT CARE.* We also don’t appreciate brands claiming ownership of things they didn’t create, which is why Target’s hands-off approach works in this case.

*This statement might not apply to trade bloggers, but who pays attention to them anyway?

PR Is Essential for Startups…or Is It?!

silicon-valley-cast

These guys (don’t) get it…

Many professional communicators will argue that every single worthwhile startup needs some public relations assistance by default–but some ambitious tech entrepreneurs disagree!

Shocking, we know. A recent point/counterpoint in the digital pages of Fast Company makes clear that this debate will continue for some time.

Earlier this month, entrepreneur Stephen Robert Morse wrote a piece titled “Why Your Startup Shouldn’t Hire a PR Firm.

The article understandably sparked a bit of controversy; some key points–and today’s rebuttal–after the jump.

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#NewKlout Helps Users Raise Their Score. Are These Scores Now Useless?

#newkloutMaybe you were one of the people who got an email yesterday introducing you to #NewKlout, which came with a ready-made hashtag and now offers suggestions for how you can raise your Klout score to something you can be proud of.

“Klout helps people who want to be great at social media,” the site announces on its homepage.

It was not so long ago (or maybe it was) when we were reading stories about how people with high Klout scores had become VIPs, scoring sweet rooms at Vegas hotels and seats on flights.

“The people who have high Klout scores tend to stay very engaged with Klout. The people without high scores, there’s nothing for them to do,” Klout CEO Joe Fernandez said in an interview with Fast CompanyAccording to Fast Company, the question Klout gets the most is how to raise your score.

So to help the low-scoring souls who are wandering aimlessly around the Internet, the site identifies user interests and suggests content to share.

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Mattell’s Top Designer Defends Barbie’s ‘Unrealistic’ Body

Here’s one we found fascinating: Mattell has obviously gotten a lot of criticism in recent years for presenting young girls with an unattainable standard via Barbie, “the most popular fashion doll ever produced.”

We were particularly taken with the “this is what Barbie would look like with the average 19-year-old girl’s body” project by artist Nickolay Lamm.

Now, despite the enthusiasm of the press release above, Mattell’s sales have declined.

In a Fast.CoDesign piece published this week, Barbie’s lead designer finally addresses critics.

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Here’s Why We All Hate Conference Calls

You may have caught this Tripp and Tyler video when it went live at the end of January, but we’d like to share it after seeing it for the first time yesterday via Fast Company because it couldn’t be more accurate.


Hell, we don’t even like in-person client meetings, what with the bad jokes and the taking of notes and the guy from accounts who you know has more important things to do.

We wish we could tell you how to avoid this sort of thing, but for now we’re enjoying the shameless self-promotion at the end.

Your ‘Safest Man to Have Sex With in America’ Pitch Can Only Work So Many Times

That “safest man” would be Ramin Bastani, founder of “an STD app” called Hula which helps users find the most convenient place to get tested for sexually transmitted diseases. The tagline is “Hula helps you get laid”, so the messaging is anything but subtle.

We get it—and based on the search results for the phrase in our headline, we can safely say the pitch worked.

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Retail Startup Hopes You’re Still Aware of the Cronut Craze

Watching the magic happenFor many, the “what the hell is that” cronut phenomenon has come and gone, wearing out its 12 minutes of fame to make way for other, less “innovative” pastry diversions.

But a certain “online gourmet food and gift curator” hopes a few sweet-toothed individuals remember. Goldbely‘s selling point is an ability to deliver specialty foods from (almost) anywhere in the U.S. to your door. Say you live in Wisconsin but you’ll die if you can’t taste the legendary cookies from Momofuku Milk Bar. Or, on the flip side, you’re a city slicker who would love nothing more than a taste of that famous King’s BBQ from Kinston, North Carolina.

In both cases, Goldbely could theoretically help you scratch that delicious itch.

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Will Alicia Keys/BlackBerry End the Celebrity ‘Creative Director’ Trend?

shutterstock_127907183In the past we’ve commented on the ridiculousness of big brands giving “creative director” titles to celebrities who can’t open a successful movie: Justin Timberlake, Ashton Kutcher, Will.I.Am, etc. But the current “are they or aren’t they” status of Alicia Keys and BlackBerry nicely illustrates how awkward the whole trend really is.

In case you haven’t looked up from your iPhone screen in three years, BlackBerry is about to join Friendster and Pets.com in the “I knew you once” graveyard. Today the company announced that it will replace its CEO and fire 40% of its staff, but Keys apparently won’t be among that number.

While everyone insisted that Keys would be doing real-life work for the brand when they hired her, they now risk making themselves look even worse by keeping her on.

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Fast Company Wants to Know How You Manage Your Insane PR Lifestyle

The obvious answer to the question “How do you get it all done?” is “I work my f*cking ass off”, but Fast Company turned it into a bit of a game this week by encouraging readers who work in the always-insane media/communications world to demonstrate, via six second Vine clip, how they manage to manage it.

Here’s a good one from Finn Partners:

What do we think? Has your firm submitted a Vine?

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