- Caution about Living in the Age of Distraction
- How to avoid the pre-digital style of news media communications
- Best and Worst Times to Post on Social Media
- Authentic storytelling is essential for business to captivate audiences
- How to Manage Crisis Communications in the Digital Era
- In a News World, the Rise of Brand Journalism
- “Lockdown” means confined, not safe, secure or protected
- Charlie Brooker’s Anatomy of the Clone-Driven Style of TV News
- How Penske brought fast support and a good memory worth repeating
- In a crisis situation, it’s necessary and okay to demand media accuracy
MARGARET WHEATLEY HAS BEEN A LEADING CONSULTANT, WRITER, AND VOICE ON EVOLVING METHODS FOR EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP IN OUR CHAOTIC WORLD FOR MORE THAN TWO DECADES. HER MOST RECENT COLUMN - REPOSTED HERE BY PERMISSION - IS MORE OF A WARNING THAT WE ARE BECOMING DISTRACTED FROM THE MORE IMPORTANT THINGS IN OUR LIVES. I HAVE CHOSEN TO RUN HER ESSAY BECAUSE I BELIEVE WE ARE BECOMING DISTRACTED BY TECHNOLOGY FROM GOOD COMMUNICATIONS SKILLS. For years I assumed that the Titanic tragedy was a result of human arrogance, the belief in the indestructibility of the newest, largest, fastest, fanciest ship of all time. But actually the Titanic went down because of distraction. Other ships had been warning about the iceberg-filled waters for days, but the Titanic’s captain changed course only slightly and did nothing to slow the ship’s speed. When the radio operator received a call from a ship that was surrounded by ice—this was less than an hour before the collision—he responded, “Shut up, shut up, I’m busy.” By the time lookouts spotted the iceberg ahead, it was too late to slow the Titanic’s momentum. Although overused, the Titanic is a chillingly accurate metaphor for our time. Distracted people don’t notice they are in danger. Rumi said: “Sit down and be quiet. You are drunk and this is the edge of the roof.” The evidence is plentiful these days that distracted people cause harm to themselves and to others. We read reports of fatal train accidents caused by the engineer texting and of commercial flights crashing because pilots were chatting. Pedestrians and drivers are killed because they’re on the phone or texting. We need look no further than ourselves to observe distraction. How long can you focus on any activity these days? How many pages can you read before wandering off? How many other things are you doing while you’re listening to a conference call? Have you stopped writing emails that make multiple requests because you only get a reply to the first one? Do you still take time for open-ended conversations with friends, colleagues, or your children? AN ECOSYSTEM OF INTERRUPTION TECHNOLOGIES In the 1930s, T.S. Eliot wrote, “We are distracted from distraction by distraction.” It’s a perfect description of our present day. How did we get here—to this life of incessant connection but total distraction—where even if we recognize that we’re hamsters on a wheel, we can’t get off? The answer is that our lives, relationships, and politics are being shaped by an ecosystem of interruption technologies. Between smartphones, tablets, and personal computers, we have instant and constant access to each other and to the Internet. Superficially, this seems to be a great benefit, but in practice we can now be interrupted at any time, in any place, no matter what we are doing. Throughout history, technology interacts with its users in predictable ways: it changes behaviors, thinking processes, social norms, and even, as neuroplasticity studies show, our physical brain structure. It may be hard to accept, but the truth is that the tools we create end up controlling us. I learned of the devouring, deterministic march of technology from the work of French philosopher, educator, and political activist Jacques Ellul. You may not have heard of him, but it was Ellul who gave us the now-trusted concept “Think globally, act locally.” Here is Ellul’s harsh clarity: Once a technology enters a culture, it takes over. It feeds on itself, assisted by eager adoption and demands for more of it. Social structures, such as values, behaviors, and politics, can’t help but organize around the new technology’s values. The predictable result is the loss of existing cultural traditions and the emergence of a new culture. Gutenberg’s printing press, because it put information into the hands of everyday people, is credited with the rise of individualism, literacy, complex language, private contemplation, the literary tradition, and the advent of Protestantism. By 1500, just fifty years after its invention, more than twelve million books were in print in Europe (and people were already complaining that there were too many books). More than just creating distraction, our growing addiction to the Internet is impairing precious human capacities such as memory, concentration, pattern recognition, meaning-making, and intimacy. We are becoming more restless, more impatient, more demanding, and more insatiable, even as we become more connected and creative. We are rapidly losing the ability to think long about any- thing, even those issues we care about. We flit, moving restlessly from one link to another. It may seem like we’re in the process of discovery, but many studies now show that multimedia environments—with links, photos, videos, bottom text crawls—don’t encourage learning and retention, because so much information overloads our circuits. Nicolas Carr, in his compelling book The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains, describes us as minds consumed by the medium. “The Net seizes our attention only to scatter it. We focus intensively on the medium itself on the flickering screen, but we’re distracted by the medium’s rapid-fire delivery of competing messages and stimuli.” He quotes Seneca, the Roman philosopher from two thousand years ago: “To be everywhere is to be nowhere.” SELF-MANUFACTURING PEOPLE The Internet, by design, gives individuals the capacity to fragment information and use it how- ever they choose. Today, there are hundreds of millions of personal filters operating at cyber speed, taking others’ expressions out of context, selecting parts they like, and constructing selves for public viewing. What’s being created is millions of individual identities, brilliantly displayed. What’s being lost is a sense of collective identity, of the shared meaning that transcends the individual and brings coherence to a culture. We’re losing the capacity and will to enter into each other’s perceptions, to be curious to see the world from another point of view. Our insatiable appetites for self-creation and self-expression have transformed us into twenty-first- century hunter-gatherers. We’ve become addicted to where the next click might lead us, so we keep hunting incessantly. Overwhelmed by inputs, caught in our self-sealing cycles, we devolve into self-manufactured people driven apart by rigid opinions and lonely for acceptance, into hungry ghosts grasping for the next new thing to satisfy us. I chose the word devolve very carefully. The most dire consequence of this instant-access, information-rich world is that it has changed the very nature and role of information. In living systems, information is the source of change; Gregory Bateson defined it as that which makes a difference. Information no longer plays this mind-changing role. No matter how reputable the science, or how in-depth and thorough the investigative reporting, no matter the photos and evidence, we sort through the information with our well-formed personal filters. Information doesn’t change our minds; we use any report or evidence merely to intensify our assaults on the other’s opinions. When we aren’t interested in disconfirming information, when we fight to protect our own opinions rather than work together for a reasonable decision, the world becomes unpredictable and random. It seems as if there’s no order, but it’s we who are the source of the chaos. When we don’t think and discern patterns, events seem to come and go out of nowhere. We don’t prepare for natural disasters; we mock leaders who take time to make decisions as “indecisive”; we refuse to read well-developed analyses; we criticize complex legislation for its page length. At work, we demand five-minute presentations and elevator speeches to “get” whatever the issue is. If something complex requires more time to understand, we’re too busy. Just like the radio operator on the Titanic. The world, of course, is neither random nor chaotic. It’s our lack of thinking that makes it appear so. Before many disasters, the information is there that could have prevented a tragedy. After a disaster, I wait to see how long it takes to reveal the information that was suppressed, the voices of warning that were silenced. This is always the case. Before the economic collapse, a few people saw the illusion for what it was (and were able to profit from the meltdown). One year before Katrina, the federal government had simulated just such a catastrophic hurricane, but officials failed to do the prep work specified in their action plans. We have made this world into an unpredictable, fearful monster because we’ve refused to work with it intelligently. And the ultimate sacrifice is the future. Thinking forward is impossible for those reacting fearfully moment by moment. Tibetan cosmology includes a class of beings who “hurl the future away from themselves,” as far from their awareness as possible. Seems they saw us coming. THE PRACTICE OF THREE DIFFICULTIES The only antidote to this culture of interruption technologies is for us to take back control of ourselves. We cannot stop the proliferation of seductive technologies or the capacity-destroying dynamics of distraction or the techno-speed of life. But we can change our own behavior. In the eighth century, the Buddhist teacher Shantideva admonished, “The affairs of the world are endless. They only end when we stop them.” Goodness knows what was so distracting in the eighth century, but he speaks well for our time. To restore good human capacities—thinking, meaning-making, discerning—we need to develop discipline. We need to be mindful of distraction, and disciplined enough to shut off the computer, put the phone down, make time for casual conversations, sit patiently, and listen—all without getting anxious that we’re wasting time, that we won’t get through our to-do list, that we’re missing out on something. The practice described in the Buddhist lojong (mind training) slogans as the “three difficulties” can restore sanity and capacity to our daily lives: 1) You notice the behavior. 2) You try some- thing different. 3) You commit to practicing that new behavior until it becomes natural. Deciding to practice nondistraction is quite difficult. At least that’s my experience. We become aware of the frantic, anxious lives of those around us. We see just how many distractions there are and how addictive our behavior has become. Then we apply the antidote: we notice our distraction, we commit to try new behaviors, and gradually we regain memory, thinking, focus, meaning, relationships. And, hopefully, we avoid the iceberg looming dead ahead. _This piece first appeared in Shambhala Sun and is posted with Margaret's other articles at http://www.margaretwheatley.com/writing.html. It is reprinted here with the kind permission from the author. Margaret Wheatley's new book is So Far from Home: Lost and Found in Our Brave New World (BK Life), published by Berrett Koehler. She is the author of six other books and works globally as a speaker, teacher, and consultant._ The post Caution about Living in the Age of Distraction appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
An infographic from the website, SustainableMan.org, really drives home the reality of today's state of the media … and the news media … in America. And, it's a bleak image for anyone attempting to get the news media's attention. About six (6) mega-corporations own everything. Outfits like Viacom, Murdoch, and Comcast. Each has its own corporate agenda, political objectives, profit models, biases, rules, and lists of people they like and those they don't like. And, here's the harsh truth - they really don't care about the mostly pre-digital ways that PR agencies and in-house communications people are trying to get their attention. The PR world's ancient style … or lazy crutch … of carpet-bombing the media with press releases, distributed blindly via such services as Vocus, PRNewswire or BusinessWire, or staging costly events that will be remembered for no more than a nanosecond are the absolute antithesis of what the media needs and cares about. The only exception might be for public disclosure reports by publicly traded companies. But the rest is ignored, diverted to spam filters as junk. On the other hand, here's how to get news media attention in the digital era - MAKE YOUR OWN NEWS. * Develop a strategy - Learn how to write, walk, talk and act like the news media. * Learn what kinds of news stories appeal to the handful of journalists who might write about your company, organization, or business sector. Believe me … it's not more than a handful who are the influencers. * When writing anything for the media, write it as a story. We are squarely in the time when digital storytelling captures attention. * Journalists today are looking for interesting angles that appeal to their specific readers or viewers. Don't talk with a Politico reporter about great ways to grow rutabaga. * Provide all of the visual elements that makes for a story. The news media - print and broadcast - needs news photos, high definition broadcast quality news-style b-roll video, and audio soundbites. If you can credibly provide that material, your chances for coverage improve. * Don't talk about your organization because no one cares. People only want to know what value your business or organization might bring to their own lives. * Use the phenomenally powerful online platform, WordPress, to present credible and legitimate news of your organization or company. While defensively disparaged by some old-school IT types, if WordPress is good enough for _The Wall Street Journal_, _New York Times_, CNN, and countless other news organizations to use, it's certainly effectively for your outfit. * Make it a priority to target people who really matter to your organization. Quite often, it is more important for a corporation or organization to connect online with business prospects, funders, business partners, vendors, customers, suppliers, and government agencies, domestic or international. The target of an organization's news might not even be the news media. Remember that the media has been cutback, laid-off, reorganized, and trivialized into entertainment. Learn to make your own news. The post How to avoid the pre-digital style of news media communications appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
Social media networks are among the most appealing and economical methods for engaging with other people online. But, they are merely a tool for sharing information - a tactic - and not a communications or marketing strategy or strategic approach. That said, someone has come up with an infographic of what times of day they believe are most effective for using online social media. What's glaringly missing is an intelligent analysis that social media is 24/7 due to the fundamental nature of the Internet, which is not constrained by time zones. It is not only impossible but by definition does not fit for social media to be confined to a "best or worst" time slot. Nonetheless, here is their infographic: The post Best and Worst Times to Post on Social Media appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
The time has arrived when it’s simply mandatory for business people and entrepreneurs to master storytelling in order to be successful. says Ms. Sellers. The phenomena of storytelling is today essential for business and other organizations, not only online but offline, she says. An authentic brand image is distinguished by telling a unique and consistent story. Why be authentic, asks Ms. Sellers? Because it's so easy today for a falsehood to be exposed. The post Authentic storytelling is essential for business to captivate audiences appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
THIS IS AN OVERVIEW OF MY PRESENTATION AT A RECENT WASHINGTON WNG FORUM. Crisis communications management in the digital era … like that of image and reputation management … is a skillful blend of proven methods and new digital techniques. Think of it as strategy (planning) and tactics (tools). Proven methods: * Advance strategic planning and consensus building. * Communications has an executive "seat at the table." * Deep expertise and extensive connections. New digital techniques: * Exceptional credentials with the latest online digital and social media technology. * Nimbleness … Knowledge and resources to act quickly. Acknowledge the devastating potential of not being prepared. Internet visionary Mark Cuban has said:
“In the Internet age, executives have to learn how to shape information about themselves and their companies, or the Internet will do it for them, and it won’t be pretty.”Understand the power of the digital era: Use new digital techniques and tools. * Know how to quickly create a crisis news site, utilizing the nimbleness, speed and SEO/social media power of WordPress. * Register … now … the basic “news” domains: www.yourorganizationnews dot com and org. * Work with a creative designer to create a basic site banner and other design needs … now. * In a crisis, use the temporary news site for updates, photos, video, social media links. * Write news style, not announcements. Use clarity, simple words. * Deliver a continuous, daily flow of news updates. * Do not post press releases which are seen as self-promotional by their very nature. * Emphasize the need internally for continuity of voice and words across all public digital and social media platforms. * Must do now: Skillfully know how to use social media, including Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Stumbleupon, Digg, Newsle, Google+. * Social media for image, reputation and crisis requires establishing and building social media accounts now … which will have brand-enhancing benefit now … and during time of crisis. * A consistent social media initiative must grow significantly in Followers, Following and engagement. * Continuity of voice and message across social media and online is essential. * Most of all, avoid the "message gulf." Avoid allowing self-serving or defensive internal messages from confusing outside perspective … or you will risk appearing out of touch. My presentation - How to Manage Crisis Communications in the Digital Era - is online. Copyright 2013 David Henderson. How to Manage Crisis Communications in the Digital Era appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
INTENSE MANDATES ON HOURLY BILLING HAMSTRING MANY COMMUNICATIONS FIRMS IN THE U.S. FROM EMBRACING NEW METHODS. AND, THAT INCLUDES THE DIGITAL REVOLUTION. MANY ARE NOT IN TOUCH WITH TRENDS OF THE DIGITAL REVOLUTION THAT ARE SCREAMING PAST THEM AT LIGHT SPEED. MANY SLOW-TO-ADAPT PR AND MARKETING EXECS DO NOT YET HAVE TWITTER OR ANY SOCIAL MEDIA INVOLVEMENT. THIS IS PARTICULARLY TRUE OF THE MEGA-PR AND ADVERTISING AGENCIES OWNED BY CONGLOMERATES OF FINANCIALLY DRIVEN HOLDING COMPANIES THAT ARE FIXATED ON GENERATING MAX BILLABLE HOURS FROM CLIENTS. TALK WITH ANY OF THEM -- AS I HAVE FOR MANY YEARS -- ABOUT THE VALUE OF BRAND JOURNALISM TO EXPEDITIOUSLY ENHANCE BRAND DISTINCTION FOR CLIENTS, AND THERE'S PUSH-BACK TO THAT IDEA OR MANY NEW CONCEPTS. WHY? THE UNRELENTING BILLING DEMANDS PERPETUATE WORKING IN SILOS. EVEN NEW MEDIA FIRMS ACQUIRED BY THE HOLDING COMPANIES ARE STILL FOCUSED MORE ON _PUSHING_ RATHER THAN LISTENING AND ENGAGING. YET EXPERTS SEE GREATER OPPORTUNITIES IN THE FIELD OF COMMUNICATIONS. LONDON-BASED TREND RESEARCHER INES NADAL OF THE AUTHENTICALLY ENLIGHTENED FIRM IPSOS MORI PRESENTS CLEAR PERSPECTIVE OF NOW AND THE FUTURE … DH By Ines Nadal of London-based Ipsos MORI To say that the newspaper industry is undergoing enormous change would be somewhat of an understatement, but the decline of traditional print media brings new online opportunities. The US Economic Report of the President shows that online publishing was actually the third fastest-growing industry between 2007 and 2011. With news being one of the things people like to share opinions on, newspapers and magazines started publishing free content online and added Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms to encourage their online readers to share and comment on articles. Sites like The Huffington Post or Gizmodo, driven by connected content and participation, now get millions of visitors every month, attracted by their combination of news, aggregated content and blogs. The Huffington Post already gets more traffic than The Washington Post or L.A. Times sites, getting closer to NYT.com. Business Without Borders, Intel’s Free Press, the excellent CMO from Adobe or Coca Cola Journey. As Ashley Brown, director for digital communications and social media at the Coca-Cola Company, said in an interview for the NYT last year, the site is very much like a newspaper or a magazine. However, there is a key difference between these branded news sites and newspapers and magazines: the content comes from the brand’s point of view and the storytelling is subjective, rather than objective, being of course favourable to the company’s brands and interests. Despite this subjectivity, Brown says that they want to be a credible news source. To ensure these branded news sites come across as authentic and informative, companies are putting a lot of resources behind them. Coca Cola employs more than 40 professionals, including journalists, external contributors and photographers. Another brand news site, The Financialist (by Credit Suisse), counts among its contributors financial journalists, economists and marketing experts. This shows how sites are constantly updated with high quality content and design that can rival traditional media’s offer. There are huge benefits for brands that practice good brand journalism. As consumers and businesses become more social, brand journalism can help companies to create interest among their audiences, leaving behind outdated press releases and push marketing. There is an opportunity to build a connection with readers and improve your reputation; if people visit your news site and identify with the content, you can improve your brand’s image and become a trusted leader in your industry. I believe brand journalism is not a fad and we will see more and more brands developing their own media. It is true that not all brands have the resources to match the efforts of HSBC or Coca-Cola and that developing a media outlet is not an option for most brands. But marketers must realise that it provides a great opportunity to engage with their audience and increase relevance of their brand. In today’s media environment, there is no longer a place for traditional corporate communications. Brand marketers need to think about how brand journalism can support their strategy and the shift in thinking that adopting this requires. Companies need to act like a journalist to create credible and honest content that adds value, in a way that will make people come back to get more and more. And let’s not forget that we are talking about brand journalism, not brand marketing. INES NADAL IS HEAD OF TRENDS & FUTURES AT LONDON-BASED IPSOS MORI. FOLLOW HER ON TWITTER @INESNADAL. The post In a News World, the Rise of Brand Journalism appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
Too many harsh words with negative and misleading connotations from law enforcement, prison management, and emergency services are becoming commonplace in the too-often careless lexicon of American language. These are words that are neither clear nor accurate. At least in my view. Some uses of language are just meaningless and confusing, such as the common use of, “Hey, ya know what I mean …?” Actually, no, we don’t know what you mean until you explain what you are trying to say. Yet, “Hey, ya know what …” has become an overused phrase by everyone from the President and pundits to people being interviewed on TV news programs who use the phrase seemingly to buy time as they think of something to say that does actually mean something! That takes me to the widespread misuse of the word, “Lockdown.” Established dictionaries define the word as: "The confinement of prisoners to their cells for all or most of the day as a temporary security measure.” Lockdown is law enforcement slang, used in the environment of prisons and jails, to impose severe and quick restraints on the actions or movements of prisoners. How many times have we seen the stereotypical prison guard in movies or TV shows bark out, “Lock ‘em down,” sometimes in a bullying tone? The word is used widely by law enforcement… and hence, by a news media that freely and unthinkingly parrots jargon … to describe keeping children safe during a threat, real or perceived. Lockdown does not mean protected, safe and secure. It means confined! As a parent and grandparent, I find it offensive to use the word "lockdown,” when we're talking about protecting children in their schools and classrooms. What sort of impression do such words make on children, let alone the public-at-large? The police and prison guards can say anything they want but how about something less condemning, less harsh, and words more clear when referring to children or office workers temporarily confined to their workplace for safety and protection. What about simply saying, “The school is safe and secure … the children are safe.” It starts with a news media that pays closer attention to words, clarity over jargon. The words we use as adults make lasting impressions on children. We have long known that when a parent calls a child “stupid,” there’s a risk of real and lasting damage to a child’s sense of self-worth. Why, then, impose the brutal words of prison incarceration on the children and the public when clearer language is more effective? Lockdown is a term that equates those in lockdown to veritable criminals being further imprisoned, not citizens being protected by law enforcement officials. "Lockdown" means confined, not safe, secure, or protected. It's okay to say, the children … the residents … the citizens, are safe, secure, and protected. In an emergency -- such as the recent terror attack in Boston -- the broad use of "lockdown" by authorities and the mirroring media was merely jargon that told us nothing. I would hope for words more professional, accurate, and clear, from law enforcement or whoever else is in charge. The post "Lockdown" means confined, not safe, secure or protected appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
Charlie Brooker's Anatomy of the Clone-Driven Style of TV News appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
At the very core of great image and reputation management is the skill and talent to create authentic memories that are worth repeating. Talk all you want about so-called forced brand building initiatives, you need to consistently deliver great stories that are memorable, bring a smile to faces, and are repeated. That’s the mark of a great brand. Let me repeat such a story about Penske, an exemplary brand with superb customer service, social media and corporate communications.
A skilled repairman replaces the truck tire "at NASCAR speed" on a Saturday evening at Zillah, Washington, as Chris watches.Our friends pulled into a parking lot near a Pizza Hut and expected the worst - it was 7 p.m. on Saturday night, and their truck had a flat tire. What’s more, a blizzard was predicted for the trek ahead. So, they called Penske’s 24/7 Roadside Assistance number and reached Marty. Marty listened to the situation, and then asked our friends to give Penske 45 minutes to come to the rescue. It must have been fate that Marty answered Penske’s toll-free line when they called back so he was up to speed. He had found a nearby tire repairman who was on the way with a replacement truck tire. How amazing is that, I thought, as Mojdeh related the story. The repairman replaced the tire at “NASCAR speed,” says Chris (@Chr1sStefan on Twitter). The Penske truck was ready but the blizzard had closed a mountain pass up ahead, meaning delay for the truck rental contract. The truck was scheduled to be returned on a certain day. It wasn’t going to happen. So, another call to Penske customer service. “No problem,” came the answer about the rental contract. Penske just extended it at no cost, no penalty. About the snow storm, the Penske representative instructed Chris and Mojdeh just to find a motel room and wait until the highway was cleared and safe again … Penske would pay the motel bill. How Penske brought fast support and a good memory worth repeating appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.
"BOSTON MARATHON BOMBING SUSPECT HAS BEEN ARRESTED AND IS IN CUSTODY BUT HAS NOT BEEN ARRESTED AND MAY NOT EXIST." Today's media … what and who are you going to believe? Here's the problem - the people at the 24/7 cable new outfits, like CNN, Fox, MSNBC, as well as most local TV news stations, have forgotten what their business is all about. They've been playing entertainment so long that they've forgotten. They are not in the business of entertainment but news. News is about reporting news … things that happen in the world … accurately and credibly. The media - especially cable TV - is like a drunk on a binge, and cannot control their near-insane rush for dramatic announcements, replete with bold red warnings of apocalyptic disaster on the screen. Everything is an "Alert" or "Breaking News." Yet, it seldom is. Wolf Blitzer saying over and over that John King has "exclusive information" is not news. It's promotion, publicity, boasting. As it turned in the Boston terror story, King's "exclusive" information was wrong. King was a font of misinformation … gossip. Corporations and organizations have literally feared calling out the news media for lack of accuracy, bias and balance in reporting over the years. Perhaps it was fear of possible retribution or simply a concern for being seen as impolite to the media. Those days are over, I say. News organizations must become more accountable for recklessness. Too much is at stake when a crisis hits for the increasing bad behavior of sloppy, sensationalistic reporting and media inaccuracy to be condoned. "Never let the facts stand in the way of a good story," may be the cute old saying in the newsroom but they can no longer get away with it. “The drive for audience ratings is responsible for the outrageous behavior by ‘the media’ to be first to the neglect of accuracy,” writes veteran CBS and NBC television correspondent Ed Rabel. “In the final analysis, the media cuts their own throats by abandoning the challenging tenets of fair and accurate journalism.” Here’s an inside view of today’s mainstream media: * Fox News, MSNBC, and CNN are no longer real news organizations, certainly not since the corporations that own them realized there are bigger ratings and profits in dramatic entertainment-style news. * Many of the seasoned, experienced behind-the-scenes news editors and researchers who once vetted news stories for accuracy are gone, replaced by young and inexperienced interns who are doing their best. * Many if not most news “anchors” or readers have no meaningful contacts to check stories themselves. They are just readers and ad-lib artists who fill time by sometimes making up stuff or making assumptions. * When you hear a television anchor or reporter say things like, “sources tell us” or “experts say” or “officials say,” it’s only true if a person or specific agency or organization is quoted. More often than not, it’s made-up. If confronted with managing communications and the media during a crisis situation, here’s what to do: * When today’s so-called “news media” is so reckless and inaccurate, it’s okay - if you are directly involved in the crisis situation - to call a news conference, gather all the reporters and cameras together, and demand accuracy in news reporting. There's no need to pussy foot around … demand responsible reporting. * Demand accurate reporting and good behavior. While anyone involved in a crisis situation has an ethical responsibility to provide accurate and factual updates, expect the same of the media … and tell them so. There’s no need to be polite with today’s reckless media. Be firm. * Read back to them their own inaccuracies and discrepancies, like a Fox News anchor who was quoting “other news organizations” in the aftermath of the Boston terror incident. * Stand in front of the cameras and say that while everything possible is being done regarding the crisis, the very nature of a crisis means that all information is not immediately known. Investigations must be conducted. In the meantime, the media must stop its entertainment circus. Yes, call it that … a circus. If the media plays so loosely about the facts, maybe they will pay attention to our wrath … as viewers and advertisers. The post In a crisis situation, it’s necessary and okay to demand media accuracy appeared first on DavidHenderson.com.