For Immediate Release 96: The crisis that keeps on giving

In the July installment of The Hobson & Holtz Report, Shel and I talked about these topics: A 15-year-old participating in a work experience program took over the Twitter account of the beleaguered Southern Rail in the UK. The response to #AskEddie was undoubtedly a welcome break for Southern Rail’s social media team, but what did it ultimately accomplish? The online publication Quartz experiments with display-type ads in the text of stories that let users ask an artificial intelligence-based chatbot

Fearless Girl

How to get the media on board to end AVE

One of the hurdles along the road of seeing an end to the “advertising value equivalence” (AVE) measurement metric that’s decried by many in the PR and measurement communities is persuading organisations to stop using it. The issue with AVE is well summarised in a white paper published by The Institute for Public Relations in 2003, in which this succinct text appears: We urge you to move away as quickly as possible from statements of the nature, “Our news coverage

British Airways Dreamliner

The big asks of British Airways

It’s hard to know what to fully make of the dreadful mess in which British Airways finds itself today. It follows over three full days of massive disruption to the airline’s business that has resulted in wide scale flight cancellations around the world, huge queues at terminals at the UK’s major airports and many in other countries, and a severe hit on reputation and trust that could cost BA dearly. According to BA, a computer systems failure led to all

Question Everything

SDF podcast 8: Seek out those you can trust

In the latest episode 8 of The Small Data Forum podcast, hosted by Thomas Stoeckle in conversation with regulars Neville Hobson and Sam Knowles, we explore whether following the ‘interesting times’ of 2016, we are seeing some sort of ‘regression to the mean’, with a right wing populist not succeeding in general elections in the Netherlands, with Emmanuel Macron becoming president of France, and with Chelsea FC winning the Premier League (following Leicester City’s surprise success last year). And such

Royal Courts of Justice

How Twitter Works – a legal opinion

Most reasonable people are aware that if you publicly publish something defamatory about someone else that is false, you can be sued for libel. If you lose the legal case, it can be expensive for you in terms of damage to your reputation as well as a financial cost. (Related: the difference between libel and slander in UK law.) And I’d add that most reasonable people are also aware that the same rules on libel apply to all methods of public communication, including online.

Fake News Invasion

Narrative versus Fact – the ‘asymmetric information warfare’

In mid 2016, the first episode of a new business podcast was published that set out to address a timely matter facing all of us today: How do you make Big Data less intimidating, more actionable and thus more valuable? That is the question at the heart of the Small Data Forum, an initiative by LexisNexis Business Insight Solutions to listen, learn, share and educate ourselves and others who grapple with the challenges of the information avalanche. The Small Data Forum

How to make your blog a secure and trusted place

If you run a self-hosted blog – like WordPress, for instance – now’s the time to enhance your confidence and that of your visitors and community in its security and trust. While this is mostly about data security, it’s also about search engine optimization and search results ranking by Google. I’m talking about enabling https, the secure form of http (hence the ‘s’) that offers important benefits: In its popular deployment on the internet, HTTPS provides authentication of the website and associated web server

WhatsApp

Privacy, WhatsApp and Facebook: a matter of trust

WhatsApp has been getting a bit of stick this past week with news of changes to its terms and privacy policy that will allow the messaging service to share your usage behaviours and other data with Facebook. […] by coordinating more with Facebook, we’ll be able to do things like track basic metrics about how often people use our services and better fight spam on WhatsApp. And by connecting your phone number with Facebook’s systems, Facebook can offer better friend

Small matters most in influencer marketing

This cartoon by Tom Fishburne, published a few days ago, is a pretty good reminder of what differentiates influencer marketing from many other kinds of marketing where, in the latter case, ‘big’ tends to be what matters. It seems to me that the term ‘influencer marketing’ is used by many people as a synonym for ‘mass marketing’ where the prime question is “how many?”  instead of “who are they?” This is especially so where social media is concerned, where far

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