Mediations comments on public relations theory and practice, with an emphasis on social media and communication ethics. Philip Young is project leader for NEMO: New Media, Modern Democracy at Campus Helsingborg, Lund University, Sweden. All views expressed here are personal and should not be seen as representing Lund University or any other organisation.
The best lectures are spontaneous, when students take the topic off into interesting new areas and start to teach me things I hadn't realised before. That's why Wednesday's Level One session on evaluation was great...
I always begin a powerpoint with a picture... usually something silly. This time it was a couple of rabbits, rom a children's book...
I had actually forgotten where it came from but somebody recognised it, saying it was something about love.
How do you measure love, I wondered? Just as clients want to evaluate PR, we all want to know whether that special person loves us (are we getting a return on our investment?!?)... Perhaps predictably, the first suggestion was "Count how many times you have sex." Good start - this is something quantifiable and countable - and probably at least as useful as Advertising Value Equivalence.
The group is a resource for anyone interested in the conference and the conference themes but also an experiment to see how a group of people who know quite a lot about PR and social media can use Facebook. Please join, please contribute, and please put forward your ideas for how the group can be developed. I would be particularly interested to hear about case studies of successful and innovative PR uses of Facebook - anybody fancy writing a paper on this theme?
Following on from Stuttgart and Ghent, I am delighted to be part of the programme commitee for Euprera's EuroBlog2008 Spring Symposium, which will be held in Brussels in March. The three-day event, Social media and the future of PR: New ideas, new research, new business, will bring together researchers and practitoners to explore the possibilities and realities of what I am still prepared to call the New PR.
By identifying and presenting examples of best practice, empirical investigation and new concepts for modelling and understanding the rapid changes in relationship management, EuroBlog 2008 will shape the agenda for social media discussion.
Papers are invited which address these questions: • How can academic research lead and support the ways in which practitioners embrace social media? • How should academics approach teaching social media (both in terms of course content and pedagogy)? • What are the societal implications of social media (democracy, accountability, privacy)?
We are also inviting contributions that will inspire new thinking on the four key themes. • Five years on: Has the New PR delivered on its promises? • Five years ahead: What will the future look like? • Social networking: Personal privacy and the public sphere. • Changing our minds?: Value exchange and the psychology of social networks.