When bunnies fight

This is a fairly old post but one I just came across. I’m nothing if not untimely.

It seems to be a reaction to a letter in PR Week, which in turn was a reaction to an announcement of the formal launch of a social media division. Unfortunately it refers to a previous post without linking to it, so the full thread is hard to define.

I find it interesting/amusing/strangely saddening in equal measure.

  • Interesting in that I think the “what do we call our separate ‘bits'” discussion encompasses a lot of what we do, not just how to treat the ‘digi bit’. There was a lot of debate around this when I headed up the project to give the Porter Novelli UK website a facelift. In the end I just went with the American model – Industries/Disciplines/Specialities – but that still perpetuates the idea that tech PR is a ‘discipline’ separate from, say, healthcare or consumer, which I’m not sure is entirely healthy.
  • Amusing in that spats are so easy to detect! You could probably put a ‘spat-spider’ out there to find arguments. The pattern is generally that of a ping-pong ding-dong between two participants, in which each one points out the hypocrisy of the other, who in turn claims the previous post misunderstood his point – ad inifinitum ad…
  • … nauseam. This is the strangely saddening bit. I remember conversations like this on the Computer Music forum years ago. I’m sure someone famous once said “Have we learned nothing?” If not, they should have done.

I’ll further qualify that last point. When ‘Web 1.0’ tipped into mainstream consciousness, many PR agencies formed New Media divisions to handle the ‘new type of journalist’. Then the bubble burst (I know, cos I was there), and all references to New Media suddenly disappeared, from company portfolios and individual CVs.

So the hype/unhype model is probably just human nature after all. The more things change, the more they stay the same. I’m sure someone famous said that.

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