June 2, 2009
Online PR: Trendspotting.
Setanta are offering ‘commentweeting‘ from veteran commentator Jon Champion for the FA Cup Final, aiming to provide ‘traditional TV viewing with a modern twist’. Channel 4, meanwhile, used Twitter to allow audience interaction with their primetime show Surgery Live this week, which saw the show becoming one of the most discussed topics on the site. Expect to see lots more channels and products encouraging feedback and discussion via Twitter – broadcasters can tap into a ready-made community, rather than try to build one up from scratch on their own websites.
Wolfram Alpha soft launched earlier this month, aiming to revolutionise the way we use the web. Whereas Google searches the whole web for the keywords entered by the user and offers a huge range of results, Wolfram Alpha aims to understand the question and return only the correct answer by mining a colossal database of information and statistics. Time will tell how successful the project turns out to be, but for now it’s fun testing the limits of the database’s computing power.
Microsoft is also about to launch its own challenger to Google’s crown, the rather strangely named Bing.com. Not a huge amount has been revealed so far, but there’s an interesting holding page.
The ethical / organic skin care firm Neal’s Yard this week faced a PR nightmare when they engaged in an open-forum discussion with consumers via the Guardian website and were deluged by harsh questioning on their stance towards alternative medicine – and rather than address the critics the Neal’s Yard representatives simply refused to answer any questions at all. The story quickly spread around the web, with Twitter playing a large part in driving more traffic to the ‘discussion’. In the end, the Guardian moderators were forced to end the session and disable further comments, leaving more than 200 queries unanswered and widespread derision and mockery of the brand across the blogosphere.
One Of Ours
Quick mention for a stunt we carried out this week on behalf of Current TV, to mark the launch of their Desperately Seeking Fame season: we compiled the Reality TV Rich List, highlighting the 25 figures who’ve banked the most money from careers launched by shows such as Big Brother, Pop Idol and X Factor. The story has proved extremely successful – and is one of the most blogged about subjects of the day, with dozens of showbiz and entertainment bloggers discussing the story (and crediting Current TV), plus homepage coverage on sites like Daily Mail, Digital Spy, and Yahoo.
This one has been flying around everywhere this week, so there’s a high chance you’ve seen it already, but in case you haven’t, here’s a brilliantly put together clip, by a couple of comic geniuses, known collectively as Cassette Boy.
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