CitizenTube: Is this the future of television news?

June 17, 2010


A year ago on the DRPR blog, we debated the future of newspapers which seemed to be doomed to extinction, making place for their online counterparts.

More recently, editor of Human Capital Magazine Iain Hopkins also questioned on the PRinks blog the future of his profession based on the fact that the internet and social media have opened up the way for basically anyone to publish anything.

Print media is having it tough… and I can only assume this debate will keep on going. But what about television news? Is it also threatened by amateur film makers in search of the next breaking news?

The launch earlier this week of YouTube’s CitizenTube might be just what will spark this debate.

CitizenTube selects and aggregates the latest ‘citizen news’ footage uploaded onto YouTube. Making the best use of social media, CitizenTube asks YouTube viewers to suggest videos to be uploaded onto CitizenTube via Twitter.

What will be interesting to see, in my opinion, is how fast the afternoon/evening news programs will be at picking up content from CitizenTube. Many morning and ‘soft news’ television programs include sections on most viewed YouTube videos and I can only assume the 5, 6 and 7pm news will follow that path with CitizenTube.

This being said, I can’t really see how CitizenTube would completely steal the spotlight over television news. At the end of the day, after having spent eight hours in front of my computer, sitting down on the couch and switching the ‘big’ screen on sounds quite appealing to me.

What do you think? Will social media and news sites like CitizenTube have a fatal effect on our evening news? Will television news also join their printed friends to the list of endangered species?



How can Twitter improve?

May 17, 2009


Coming back to my previous posting about Twitter, I’ve got a tip to help them stay on top of the tree: wouldn’t it be great if we could follow anyone in any language, while having their updates automatically translated and appearing on our profile in our own chosen language?

What other functions do you think would improve the Twitter site?

Kim Larochelle

Twitter, Tumblr, Flutter… a fight of character

May 14, 2009


I jumped on the Twitter bandwagon about three months ago, not having the slightest idea what meaningful 140-character piece of information I could share with my ‘dearest’ followers. To my surprise, I picked it up fairly quickly and started seeing the potential for me and DRPR.

Then this week I heard on Mumbrella of Tumblr, which to me seems like a boosted Twitter. It allows users to post anything, whatever the format or number of characters.

And then there’s Flutter, the new ‘nano blogging’ website…

There isn’t any Flutter. But this brilliant Flutter joke highlights the fight for fame social media communities are having and people’s mentality of always looking for ‘the next big thing’.

Do we need to have a ‘next big thing’? Is it possible for a particular community or social media tool to keep its fame forever?

How long will it be before Twitter’s online supremacy crashes – brought down by the ‘next big thing’? 

I would love to hear of any other social media tools you believe may be increasing in popularity to challenge Twitter’s reign. Any thoughts? 


Kim Larochelle

PR firms: move online or phase out

April 8, 2009

US-based PR practitioner Gaye Carleton mentioned in a blog that “virtual on its own is a mere puff of smoke” and “while at the moment we’re fascinated with all things virtual and with virtual being touted as ‘the future is now,’ I say, ‘Just say no.’”


She goes on to say that the mix of physical – a press clipping, a press kit, a creative promo item – and virtual is fine, but she worries that PR could become an ‘at-risk’ industry.


My perspective on the subject is that the PR industry is at risk only if it does not embrace online communities.


Although there is a myriad of bloggers online with nothing but opinions to express, the key to online PR is to find bloggers, forums, social networking sites and any other platforms relevant to your specific client industries. People read magazines and listen to TV programs that they are interested in. The same applies to blogs, e-zines, e-newsletters and so on. So it is possible to listen (see my previous posting) to only the relevant online conversations and start creating a real dialogue with users.


Online has made the sharing of information, tips and feedback so much more open and PR practitioners just need to grasp these opportunities to get out there with authentic facts and stories about their clients.


So I’m 100 percent behind Timo’s comment to the ‘PR: Physical vs. Virtual’ blog that “Through social media we got the great chance to really put the public back into public relations.”


Obviously, looking at ‘traditional’ PR, there’s nothing like meeting a journalist face-to-face and creating that interpersonal connection with them. It’s definitely that best way to make sure that next time we send them an email, start twittering with them or become their connections on LinkedIn, we will actually mean something to them J.


To give an Australian perspective to this ‘PR: physical vs. virtual’ debate, with the Australian Government announcing this week the creation of a new super fast National Broadband Network, it goes to show that the importance of online and therefore online PR is only going to increase with time.


So my prediction is that PR agencies that are denying the online phenomenon or simply not preparing themselves by up-skilling their staff and adjusting their services to include an online component are simply not going to survive in the long run.


Kim Larochelle