Social media stars breaching rules on promoting brands, watchdog says

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The Guardian reports on a rise in complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), the UK advertising regulator, who says ‘influencers’ on social media sites such as Instagram and Twitter fail to declare that they are being paid to publicise products. The newspaper defines ‘influencers’ thus: Social media celebrities who have large and engaged followings online. They get paid money to publicise products and can command tens of thousands for one post. This is about disclosure where the influencer publicising a product or service would makes it clear in his or her post that there’s some kind of relationship with the brand owner and/or that the influencer receives compensation for that post, financial or otherwise. It’s common sense to disclose such […]

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Fake news is a global concern says BBC survey

To many people, the phenomenon known as fake news is something that’s moved beyond just a news item itself and into the realm of trust. With so much reporting and commentary about fake news, it’s no surprise that we’re placing greater importance on verifying the truthfulness of what we read, listen to and watch that is called ‘news.’ Whether it’s online or via the traditional mainstream media, or from companies, governments and others, we want to feel assured that what we encounter as news is real and not fake or propaganda. Take the image above, a snapshot from the news I saw earlier today in the BBC News app on my Android tablet. To me, some of the news items […]

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#Hashtag10: the best hashtag fails in a decade


How did we manage before Twitter? is a question I often hear, asked by a range of different people from casual personal users to immersed influence marketers. I’ve found it a great tool over the past decade to help me connect with others, share thoughts and opinions, bookmark ideas and join up the dots in conversations. It’s that latter aspect that is especially useful thanks to the hashtag, a device created by Chris Messina that came to the fore a decade ago as a means of connecting people and the conversations they have on Twitter surrounding a particular topic. Today, the hashtag is ubiquitous as a highly-effective connectivity tool in use in almost immeasurable ways and across the wide spectrum […]

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20 Highlights from Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends 2017 report


The 2017 edition of venture capitalist Mary Meeker’s annual Internet Trends report was published last week. As with previous editions, the 2017 report offers credible insights into some of the significant trends that are shaping, evolving and defining the internet and our use of it. This year, there’s a strong focus on online advertising, interactive games, healthcare, and much more. Weighing in at 355 slides, the presentation deck PDF is a hefty opus with much to glean and digest. I’ve zeroed-in on some metrics that offer insights of particular interest to communicators like me. Following my narrative, in which I note the numbers of the specific slides that I’m highlighting, I’ve embedded Meeker’s deck so you can view or download […]

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Lights, camera, action: the unexpected rise of live online video

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