Holmes Report Blog

The Holmes Report blog focuses on news and issues of interest to public relations professionals. Our main site can be found at www.holmesreport.com.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Created vs. Earned, Part II: Richard Edelman's first post of the new year (no criticism intended, he's a lot busier than I am) dovetails nicely with Steve Rubel's ruminations yesterday about what he calls "created" media and the traditional "earned" media that is the PR industry's bread-and-butter.

Richard cites a couple of stories--one involves the Washington Redskins doing an end run around the mainstream media by providing exclusive interviews to Redskins.com TV; the other reporting that: " Subjects of newspaper articles and news broadcasts now fight back with the same methods reporters use to generate articles and broadcasts, taping interviews, gathering email exchanges, taking notes on phone conversations and publish them on their own Web sites." Both appear to be examples of "created" media.

Richard makes an excellent point about the Redskins story: "While the technology exists to go direct to the end user of information does not mean it is smart to make it the exclusive means of news dissemination... Talking to the traditional media is also part of what fans deserve... There needs to be some opportunity for critical observers, whether reporters or bloggers, to ask questions of those in charge, whether in government, business or sports. If you don't like the heat, get out of the kitchen."

There's nothing new or interesting about "created" media if we are just using new channels to send out the same pre-packaged, controlled, one-way communication.

Richard's right about the second story, too: "Let the facts speak for themselves. Post the raw material in the spirit of the Web. Let everybody see the full interview copy. They can draw their own conclusions."

That's an entirely appropriate use of "created" media. It's disruptive. It's participatory. It opens up dialogue--at least between the reporter and his subject; hopefully between both parties and the intended audience.

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