Yes, you are the product. But you don’t have to be.

Are you the product today? Heck Yeah!

In the past two weeks, many people have jumped on the bandwagon launched by Will Oremus’ article “Are You Really the Product? The history of a dangerous idea.” In a nutshell, Oremus argues that the “If you’re not paying for the product, you are the product,” aphorism doesn’t really apply in the case of Facebook.

Gini and Joe have different perspectives on this. Gini sees a lot of value in Oremus’ arguments. Joe thinks that his arguments are beguiling, but convoluted, bringing us to the same conclusion: “If you aren’t paying for it with money, you are paying for it in other ways.” Ultimately, he who pays for something sets the terms.

Don’t fall into the trap of believing this is an expression of powerlessness. In fact, as Joe sees it, it is a call to action.

So, what can we do about it?

First, don’t think about recreating Facebook or finding a viable Facebook competitor. Facebook has reached dominance and will not be challenged until it is broken up. (Remember the good things that followed on the AT&T break up in the 1980s? Basically, it created the opportunity that became Silicon Valley.)

Instead, think about the more selective, specialized things that we want to do, connections that we want to make, networks we want to create, that reflect our actual interests. Think about why so many people see Slack as their social platform. Why we love using Apple Messages to create groups of friends for sharing. Places that will give us the dignity and respect that we want. That will be geared to us. Not their advertising model. And places that we are prepared to pay for.

Don’t fight Facebook. Go outside of and beyond Facebook.

LinkedIn at 15

LinkedIn. Can it really be 15 years old? It seems like only yesterday we first met.

LinkedIn is not as big as Facebook. It doesn’t sit at the middle of the news cycle like Twitter. And it doesn’t have the love directed at Instagram. But it is older than all of these social networks – and it occupies a unique place for business. We talk about how it has changed over the years and our ongoing love/hate relationship with it.

Linkworthy

Are You Really the Product? The history of a dangerous idea, Will Oremus

LinkedIn Turns 15, Allen Blue

 

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

Creative Commons Licence
Are you really the product? Heck Yeah! by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Does your business belong on Reddit?

Should you use Reddit for your business communications? Will the Reddit community welcome you or even accept you? Mike Connell’s recent article on the Spin Sucks blog launched this week’s discussion.

And we didn’t need much prompting to talk about Mark Zuckerberg’s appearance before Congress. Not surprisingly, Gini, Martin and Joe have very different takes on Zuckerberg’s performance and its impact and potential consequences.

Linkworthy

Here are a couple articles that inspired us to consider theses topics. We recommend them as reads well worth your time:

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

Creative Commons Licence
Does your business belong on Reddit? by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Seize the (Social Network) Power

We CAN change the balance of power between people and the social networks. But to do so, we need to be aware that it is our presence that makes social networks economically viable. And we need to look to government and public interest groups to champion and, if necessary, force the changes that will assert our rights and interests as a precondition to social networks being able to operate in our country.

We talk about what might it might take to rebalance the relationship.

  • Applying the concept of informed consent;
  • Time-limiting consent to enable people to reconsider – and to make the social networks have to continue to work to gain our trust;
  • Recognizing that, in accepting our data, social networks have a relationship of fiduciary duty with us as surely as our accountants and banks to;
  • Providing people with a real ability to retract information
  • Providing people with the ability not just to download the info we have given to the social networks, but also the metadata they have generated and compiled about us
  • Finally, making data available to public interest groups and journalists – those who can provide a skeptical public counterpoint to the social networks.

It’s in our power. It’s in the power of our legislators. Ask them to do more.

Linkworthy

Here are a couple articles that inspired us to consider this topic. We recommend them as reads well worth your time:

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.
Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR 502 by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Mark Zuckerberg’s Year of Living Dangerously

Mark Zuckerberg is quiet no more. After a period of uncomfortable silence that saw Facebook savaged by privacy advocates and users like us, Zuckerberg gave a remarkable interview to Ezra Klein, suggesting a Facebook governance structure that would transcend national boundaries. Huh?

And what does 1.1.1.1 mean to you? Thanks to Cloudflare, you now have another means of protecting your privacy from your Internet Service Provider.

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.
Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR 501 by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Inside PR 500: The Web is 29 years old and we still have hope

It’s episode 500 of Inside PR. Thank you for listening to the first 500. And now,we’re starting the next 500. Episode 1,000, here we come!

This week we talk about positive steps by Twitter, Facebook and Netflix to promote authoritative news sources and video news magazines. A new news ecosystem takes shape?

The Web is almost 30 years old. And the Web’s inventor, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, wrote a thought-provoking article about the threats to the Web. Well worth reading and considering. Something about which we all should be taking action.

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR 500 by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Inside PR 499: Algorithms are as neutral as the people who write them

This week, we talk about the introduction of ethics into tech education, a move that’s long overdue. Could ethics in Tech turn on the concept, Do no harm?

Also: Facebook users are skewing older as younger people move to other platforms. Can geritol ads be far behind? And Google AMP Stories shows another platform moving to take advantage of the trend to package and present content as stories.

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR 499 by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Inside PR 497: Take control of your personal privacy and data

Who will give us the tools to have control over our personal privacy and data?

This week, we keep the focus on Facebook and its algorithms. As long as two thirds of us are using the platform, it is important. We start our discussion with Matthew Ingram’s recent Columbia Journalism Review article, Facebook’s latest changes will probably make misinformation worse. Facebook is indisputably a media company. A change in its algorithm will not change that. And so measures like its two question news questionnaire are something we should examine closely, like every move Facebook is making in this area. But as we do, we must recognize that Facebook’s algorithm is opaque to its users. There is no way we really can know what is going on under the hood. And that affects what we read. It’s a question of having control.

And, if you think that we are just baying at the moon, another piece of news worth noting, this time out of Canada. Think about the Right to be Forgotten. Then think about the GDPR. Think about CASL, the Canadian Anti Spam Law. Now read a discussion paper from the Privacy Commissioner of Canada . The need to give individuals more control over their data leads to a focus on de-indexing and source takedown. The bottom line: We may have a global internet, but we have national sovereignty over privacy and personal rights. So, pay attention. You may not want government regulation, but that doesn’t mean you won’t get it.

Finally, we talk about Google Bulletin, It reminds us that, before Facebook pushed into and then fled news, there was Google. And when we talk about innovation, let’s not count out Google.

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

******************************************************************

Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR 497 by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Inside PR 496: News on Facebook. Payola PR. Where’s the accountability and responsibility?

We take a further look at Facebook’s shifting treatment of news that appears in our newsfeeds. The problem: Facebook has become the dominant news distribution platform. However, the algorithms have had a nasty propensity to elevate what has been broadly labelled as fake news. So, in this new world, how are we to know what is real, what is reliable, what is trustworthy? In recent weeks, Facebook has announced measures to address this issue. Today, our conversation centers on the introduction of two survey questions to ask Facebook users about their awareness of and trust in news sources.

Also on this week’s agenda, payola PR. Does it exist? What does it say about ethics in PR? What should we as an industry and as individual practitioners do to combat it?

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

******************************************************************

Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Inside PR 495: Facebook drops news. Now what?

Facebook head Mark Zuckerberg last week announced that Facebook’s solution for fake news is to remove news from the newsfeed. In making the announcement, Zuckerberg said:

“…I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions.

“…The first changes you’ll see will be in News Feed, where you can expect to see more from your friends, family and groups.

“As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard — it should encourage meaningful interactions between people.”

So, less news in the newsfeed. More things that my friends share or that I click on. Martin Waxman and Joseph Thornley talk about the implications of this for news outlets, PR people and Facebook users themselves.

Some people say this is not a problem for them. Others say that this could be the nail in their coffin. It will take some time for this play out. It most assuredly creates a vacuum. And that could well lead to a period of innovation as publishers and communicators turn to other platforms and tools (check out Feedly).

However this turns out, there is no doubt that Facebook always looks after its own business interests. And in this case, its interest simply was not to come to grips with the problem it created in its relentless push to aggregate audiences and content outlets.

Facebook made this mess. Now the rest of us are left to deal with it.

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR.

Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.

******************************************************************

Creative Commons Licence
Inside PR 495: Facebook drops news. Now what? by Joseph Thornley, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://insidepr.ca.

Inside PR 489: People before Platforms

We talked to one another for 42 minutes to plan the podcast before we started to record. At the end, we’ve decided to take the pressure off by saying that this is a recording that is not remarkable. Just three friends, three communications professionals talking about issues of importance to us. The responsibility of the big platforms, Facebook and Google.  Their begrudging appearance before Congress, an appearance that makes that case that government has levers that, just by their existence, keeps the big players in check. If Congress had not persisted, we never would have gotten the real picture about what was going on with Facebook, Google and Russian interference in the US election.

Yep, Facebook and Google are media companies. Publishers that makes judgements through the algorithms they deploy just as surely as humans do. Have they become too dominant, too focused on their own commercial interest, to realize the original dream of people connecting with one another in a meaningful, positive way?

And what’s the impact of a few dominant players on innovation? When they buy new innovative companies when they haven’t yet fully realized their potential.

That may not be a remarkable discussion. But that doesn’t make it unimportant.

It’s your turn.

We’d love to know what you think about the topics we discussed as well as your suggestions for questions you’d like answered or topics for future shows. Leave a comment on the blog, send us an email or an audio comment to [email protected], leave a comment on the Inside PR Facebook group or the FIR Podcast Network Facebook group, We’re also on Twitter. We’re @inside_pr or connect directly with Gini DietrichJoseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman.

#IPRMustKnow

Our hashtag is #IPRMustKnow. If you are tweeting or posting about the podcast, please include our hashtag so that we can find your post.

Please rate us on Apple Podcasts

We hope you like the podcast as much as we like making it for you. If you do, we have a favor to ask: If you like this podcast, please rate us on Apple Podcasts.

Subscribe on the podcast app of your choice

We’re trying to be wherever you want us to be. So, you can subscribe to Inside PR on the most popular podcast apps.

******************************************************************

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR. Our theme music was created by Damon de SzegheoRoger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Joseph Thornley.