Posts Tagged ‘Media’

The lighter side of politics

May 12, 2010

I followed the whole general election debacle with much interest, particularly around the debates. I also took a keen interest in the PR stunts that some agencies did off the back of the election, such as the great ‘designer’ kitchens from Ikea, where each one was made to represent one of the potential 3 leaders.

Another big talking point amongst more of the fashion and beauty focused people was the impeccable smoothness of DCam’s shiny and super smooth forehead. Now, everytime I looked at him, I couldn’t help but wonder where I’d seen that face before. And no, not in politics, but just someone else who had an uncanny likeness to him. And then it came to me. Don’t get me wrong, I actually don’t mind our new prime minister…but this looky-likey..well, judge for yourself!

From L-R: Jake Tucker, Family Guy; David Cameron, our new Prime Minister

Depressing yet true

December 21, 2009

I’ve just read an interesting story on CNET US that is discussing the news that the state of Maine is deciding to put warning stickers on all mobile phones to be sold in shops across the state.

The story leads with this paragraph, which, effectively, sums up the whole piece: “Although there is no conclusive proof that mobile phones cause cancer, a Maine legislator wants to require all mobile phones sold in the state to carry warnings that say mobile phones may do so”. “Although there is no conclusive proof” – so WHY do it then?!

I find this bizarre – nearly everything causes cancer these days, and we all already know about it, so why strike more fear into people by putting warning stickers on phones, when it’s not even proven! Smoking, sure, I get that, but phones? The world’s going mad!

Hi…er, is that Mr Monster Munch?

December 7, 2009

It emerged in the news recently that a man who loves Monster Munch, the best crisps to emerge from the 90s ever (fact), has changed his name by deed poll to Mr Monster Munch, to show his love of the potato snackettes.

The reports that “He often mixes his Monster Munch with traditional meals – but is yet to crack the secret of mixing the crisps with his breakfast”, and that he changed his name after his mates dared him to. When asked about his love affair with the crisps, he replied ”I just don’t want to give up Monster Munch – I loved them when I was a lad and when they brought out the new retro packs I must admit my heart skipped a beat.” His friends say they’ll call him Monster.

Oh dear….

The moon is made of cheese…

July 30, 2009

OK so that headline is more in my imagination, but recently, there has been cheese near the moon. No, I’m serious, and it’s literally my favourite story of the year so far. So much do I like this story, that I have tweeted about it 3 times. Once about its launch, once about its attempt at orbiting the Earth, and finally about its safe landing in a garden.

The BBC reads, and I quote:  ‘A block of cheese launched into the upper atmosphere on Tuesday has been found undamaged in Buckinghamshire’.

The piece of cheese was launched into the Earth’s atmosphere with a helium launch pad a few days ago, to mark the

The fateful cheddars as it prepares for take off...

The fateful cheddar as it prepares for take off...

 40th anniversary of the moon landing.  Makers even fitted it with GPS, to track its whereabouts, but the devious West Country Farmhouse Cheesemakers’ cheddar was quickly ‘lost in space’.

Its maker, a fine gentleman called Dom Lane is going to now taste a bit of the infamous cheese, to ‘see if it matured at high altitude’. GENIUS! I bet it tastes wonderful. I’ve always wanted to try space cheese.

Some people may read this post and think “what a waste of time” that a) someone launched a piece of cheese into space in the first place, and b) why is this mad woman so keen to write about it? But then there are those who, like me, will sit back and appreciate this story for what is really is: an attempt to change the world, through the power of cheese. Nom nom nom…

As Maxim and Arena close down, online reigns supreme

April 2, 2009


The news that the June issue of Maxim will be their last one in print is another blow to the media industry. With Arena recently closing too this is a powerful indicator that there is likely to be more bad news on the horizon this year.  If advertisers continue to cut their budgets the traditional media that has been relied on for so long to seed messages and ideas will not be able to survive.  Now, more than ever, brands need to be turning to the online world to reach their audience – targeting editorial websites, effectively engaging with relevant and influential bloggers or creating campaigns that target consumers through social media. This may mean getting out of the old comfort zone and learning entirely new skills.


The ones that jump in without researching these avenues first or gaining any insight into best practice have been, and will continue to be, the ones that get burned. And this burn doesn’t fade. The power of the online world is such that your mistakes are permanently etched into the web for all to see, leaving you with a lasting scar.  Ironically, the lesson here is that nothing changes – whether it’s traditional or social media, as always, it is the companies that take the time to understand their audience, and the channels they are using to target that audience, that will see the best results.  They’ll be the ones that sail through campaign after campaign not just unscathed, but in good health.


The Mousetrap

December 5, 2008


Everyone loves mice

Everyone loves mice

The consumer technology giant Logitech has just seen the billionth computer mouse roll off its production lines. Their publicity machine merrily declared: “It’s rare in human history that a billionth of anything has been shipped by one company”. Well, actually that must happen quite a lot. If there are one billion mice, it stands to reason that there must also be a huge number of monitors, keyboards and other technology – not to mention companies that produce FMCGs…

Regardless, the first computer mouse ever produced is just about to hit 40 years of age. It was 9 December 1968 when Douglas C. Engelbart and his group of researchers at Stanford University put the first mouse through its paces. But Gartner analyst Steve Prentice has claimed that “the mouse will no longer be mainstream in three to five years”, given the arrival of touch-screen technology and other advances. Seems like a hit or mice statement to me.

Now even birds are going on strike…

November 21, 2008



Bird Strike!

Bird Strike!

Apparently, the aviation industry’s troubles are continuing and now even nature has turned against them…

“Multiple bird strikes” forced Ryanair flight FR4102 from the sky and into an emergency landing last week.  Ryanair immediately released pictures of the blood splattered plane – presumably believing this to be some kind of PR coup.

Interestingly, lessons seem to have been leant from Ryanair’s handling of previous crises and they apologised profusely for the disruption. Near-misses like these are always a PR challenge for companies, but full disclosure is a good policy. They also correctly mentioned the efforts of the crew to keep the passengers safe.

An airline cannot really be blamed when a flock of birds decides to commit mass-suicide-by-aircraft-engine, but any negative PR is something to be avoided in the current climate for the aviation industry. Whilst most people may choose not to fly because of the credit crunch, there must be some who just don’t like the idea that their multi-million dollar passenger jet can be brought down by a depressed seagull…

I am worried John McCain will bomb my goats…

October 31, 2008

Two excellent virals caught my attention this week – both motivated by the impending US election.


The first is a remake of the classic “Wassup” Budweiser advert and is a good example of a traditional-style piece of advertising spreading through viral means.



The second might more properly be called a viral – it pretends to be a news report on the US election and can be customised so that it blames you personally for the republican victory. Expensive, but very effective



BBC suspends Brand and Ross over ‘answerphone-gate’

October 29, 2008

Whoever said today’s news is tomorrow’s chip paper did not anticipate the maturation of the UK’s Health and Safety regulations.  They also did not anticipate the power of the media when it comes to whipping up a storm. 

Immediately following the broadcast of Russell Brand/Jonathan Ross obscene phone messages to Fawlty Towers’ Manuel, only two people complained about the content.  Fast forward ten days and by 9.30 this morning, that figure had risen to more than 18,000. And the duo are suspended pending an investigation.

I, probably like the majority of those who complained about the broadcast, have not actually heard the offending piece. But I imagine it to be quite offensive.  The Russell Brand show often is.

So why the furore now?  

Because it has all the ingredients to make a very tasty story indeed.  Russell ‘living the Brand’? Check.  Ageing British TV icon?  Check.  Pics of a saucy young vixen? Check.  BBC wasting licence fee payer’s money?  …you get the picture. And once a story like this makes it onto the news agenda we the public, reporters, PRs and commentators alike all swarm like flies around the news squeezing it for all it’s worth. 

Not that it acts as any kind of salve for Manuel, but looks like his grand daughter (who probably did have relations with that man, by all accounts) will benefit from this – in a Madonna/Magdalen way of course – chiding the offenders for their lewdness at the same time as promoting her career in erotic dance.

Grammar Nazi: Potentially part one of a series…

June 18, 2008

 Just had a rather unsavoury request through from an un-named journalist who asks:

“Are you a mother with a child under five who is a smoker but who doesn’t smoke in the home?”

The journalist in question, did of course mean to ask, “Are you a mother with a child under five?  Do you smoke, but not in the home?”

One hopes, anyway.

And they say that English standards have slipped…

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