Emerging tech: Your bookmark for 2019

Data has a better idea “We know from human history that developments in technologies over the centuries, ranging from the Industrial Revolution through to the invention of the automobile, then airplanes and so forth, the landscape of progress is littered with human casualties. People die because of these things being tested.” A provocative statement, the first thing you hear in episode 1 in the third season of the Digital Download podcast that I did with host Paul Sutton last month in which we discussed emerging technologies and communications and what’s predicted to hit the mainstream within the next two to three years. That statement was intended to sharpen focus on the dilemmas confronting all of us when we want to try something new or radically different to advance our knowledge, our well-bring, our development, where there are risks in doing so. It’s an extreme example of risk and consequence on the journey to that
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For Immediate Release 143: Fired by mistake by an AI

Neville Hobson joined FIR host Shel Holtz for the June edition of “The Hobson & Holtz Report” and conversation about these topics:
  • An employee was mistakenly fired by an AI system and managers stood by powerless to correct the mistake. Was AI really to blame?
  • IBM has introduced an AI designed for debate, which could mean there’s finally an unbiased devil’s advocate to point out the flaws in your business plan.
  • There is no minimizing the threat to the Internet posed by the draconian copyright restrictions the European Parliament could vote into law as early as the first week of July.
  • A couple of PRSA members are proposing an overhaul of ethics rules to make sure they apply to the group’s executive board (and making their case hasn’t been easy).
  • The World Cup is using a Video Assisted Referee, which would have applications far beyond sports.
  • Facebook is testing paid monthly
    FIR 143 The Hobson & Holtz Report
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For Immediate Release 126:Is KFC FCK’d?

Neville Hobson
For Immediate Release 126:<br />Is KFC FCK’d?
Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz get together for the February instalment of “The Hobson & Holtz Report” aka For Immediate Release episode 126. The big topic in this episode is the plight of KFC in the UK and Ireland where the fast-food restaurant chain has been without its core ingredient – chicken – for weeks as it is embroiled in a crisis that has seen more than half its restaurants in the two countries closed. Two weeks on with the crisis still not fully resolved, KFC’s communication about what they’re doing to fix their supply chain and logistics dilemma has been a topic of much comment and analysis in the UK, with some describing the comms as “a masterclass in PR crisis management.” Is it? We weigh in with our opinions (and share others’). Does the way people are
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SDF Podcast 16 – Trust, communication clarity, balanced news and tech heretics

Neville Hobson
SDF Podcast 16 – Trust, communication clarity, balanced news and tech heretics
3 businesswomen Yet again, the Three SDF Podcasteers Neville Hobson, Sam Knowles and Thomas Stoeckle tackle a range of related themes, from trust in society to clarity in corporate messages, global attitudes towards news, and Silicon Valley’s growing number of critical voices. This episode’s show notes were written by Thomas Stoeckle.

The 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer finds China and the US poles apart, with the US in last place, experiencing its largest drop in the survey’s history, and China on top with the strongest gains among all 28 surveyed countries.

Now in its 18th year, the Barometer makes for an excellent chronicle of perceptions of trust around the world – and a time series that warrants more deep dive analyses, to glean insights, learn, and perhaps to lead to better informed decision-making. Sam points to the fact that
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2018: the year of chatbots, AI and digital personal assistants

Neville Hobson
2018: the year of chatbots, AI and digital personal assistants
Work 2017 was the year that artificial intelligence (AI) generally gained a greater consciousness in the public mind as well as in the minds of many professionals, not the least being those in the broad communication business – especially public relations, advertising, marketing and employee communication. Every time we see a robot mentioned in the mainstream media, there’s either a photo of the Terminator or some human-looking machine which feeds our fear – adding to the uncertainty and doubt already in everyone’s minds – that the robots are coming to take our jobs. I’m noticing, though, that while such imagery is not entirely going away it seems to be getting less. And we’re beginning to hear from some influential voices in the communication business that the conversation is now focusing on things that we’ve been trying to talk about
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New Report on Change Agents: the Unsung Heroes in Digital Transformation

Neville Hobson
New Report on Change Agents: the Unsung Heroes in Digital Transformation
butterfly According to Brian Solis, the real (often untold) stories about digital transformation are the human struggles “change agents” face as they try to modernize their organizations. There are always colleagues, managers and others who don’t get it. Solis – futurist, best-selling business-book author and principal analyst at Prophet’s Altimeter Group – has written a 29-page report that examines how the people behind digital transformation lead change from within their organizations. From the report’s executive summary:
In a world where digital technology is evolving faster than organizations can adapt, it’s no secret that companies are investing in digital transformation and corporate innovation. But who is leading the charge? Often, it’s the individuals who share a deep expertise and passion for digital. And while these “digital change agents” are striving to bring change from within their respective group
The Digital Change Agent's Manifesto
Nothing Happens When Everything Stays The Same
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For Immediate Release 113: Not a 280-Character Episode

NevilleHobson.com
For Immediate Release 113: Not a 280-Character Episode
appiiscreens Shel and I recorded the November edition of the monthly Hobson & Holtz Report podcast. We had a great chinwag on these topics:
  • A follow-up to our KFC story (about 11 herbs and spices); the social media team struck again.
  • Twitter has made its new expanded 280 character count available to almost everyone. Not everyone is happy about it.
  • Uber’s new CEO took an investigator’s advice and scrapped the company’s old values statements. Instead of simply crafting a new one, he crowdsourced it to his employees, who responded in a big way.
  • The traditional media thinks the fake news problem is elevating trust in the traditional media. Audiences don’t agree.
  • When pregnant US mums get information from a website with social media elements, they’re more likely to get their children vaccinated and keep those vaccinations up to date. There are
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How to engage the C-suite about social media with authority and confidence

NevilleHobson.com
How to engage the C-suite about social media with authority and confidence
Meeting “Social media takes time to build,” said one of the participants in the webinar on social media and the C-suite that I co-presented for the Society for New Communications Research (SNCR) of The Conference Board earlier this month. It underscores a primary reality for communicators looking to engage their leaders in helping them understand the strategic value of social media in the long term as a legitimate business tool. It’s equally true that one of the biggest obstacles to using social media for business effectively and measurably has been a gap, a lack of clarity of mind, where leaders of organizations cannot see beyond tweets, likes and impressions – hardly strategic imperatives, in their minds – a point I noted in my post last month about the forthcoming webinar. Titled “Best Practices for
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SNCR webinar will help you close the C-Suite gap about social media

NevilleHobson.com
SNCR webinar will help you close the C-Suite gap about social media
Executives While the time is long gone when you had to explain, routinely, to members of the C-Suite what social media is, it’s often still a time of explaining what social media does. One of the biggest obstacles to using social media for business effectively and measurably has been that gap, that lack of clarity of mind, where leaders of organizations cannot see beyond tweets, likes and impressions – hardly strategic imperatives, in their minds. In many cases, the lack of leadership clarity isn’t surprising when the focus from communicators is on the tactical – the tweets, like and impressions – rather than the strategic. A new research report from the Society for New Communications Research (SNCR) of The Conference Board (TCB) presents communicators and business leaders an opportunity to close that gap
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SDF podcast 11: From winning with data to the future of fake facts

NevilleHobson.com
SDF podcast 11: From winning with data to the future of fake facts
London Docklands For the 11th time, the SmallDataForum convened – this time to explore questions related to the opportunities and challenges of data in business, the rational and emotional side of decision-making, and the continuing erosion of trust and confidence in the truthfulness of information. Stephen Fry’s fabulous narration of the complete works of Sherlock Holmes formed the backdrop to musings about data sleuthing and the skill sets required for successful forensic analytics. This episode’s show notes were written by Thomas Stoeckle.

Big Data’s Business Value

A recent Harvard Business School article discussed the issue that Companies Love Big Data but Lack the Strategy to Use It Effectively. Neville sums this up succinctly: “You don’t need big data strategy, you need a strategy that understands where big data fits in.” Such a business strategy needs to
Thomas Stoeckle
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For Immediate Release 96: The crisis that keeps on giving

NHC
For Immediate Release 96: The crisis that keeps on giving
Southern Rail's social media Eddie In the July installment of The Hobson & Holtz Report, Shel and I talked about these topics:

Crossing Over to the Darkside of Digital and Seeing the Light

“Yesterday is not tomorrow; we can’t innovate, we can’t do new things by opening old doors.” Paul Miller spends a lot of time thinking about the future of work. In fact, he wrote a book on the subject, “The Digital Renaissance of Work: Delivering digital workplaces fit for the future.” I greatly respect Paul’s work and I’ve been lucky to know him for quite some time now. In fact, I was honored to write the foreword to his book. Following that, Paul was my guest on a pilot podcast, “DigitalOutliers,” where we examined the need and means to bring digital literacy into the C-Suite. Some time has passed since then, but we recently reconvened as part of Paul’s new podcast to explore a more philosophical discussion, the dark side of digital and how to shape its future. The episode, officially titled, “Brian Solis peers into the digital
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Why the gig economy fits well with the lives of Baby Boomers

NHC
Why the gig economy fits well with the lives of Baby Boomers
Robert De Niro - a Baby Boomer - in The Intern with Anne Hathaway We Baby Boomers are benefiting significantly from the gig economy, says author, speaker and optimist Tim Drake. Not just as consumers by it providing lower prices and more convenience, but as participants too. It’s an important bolt-on to something bigger, he says, enabling new ways of doing business to emerge, and a fresh outlook on what ‘work’ is. But is it something we should think about taking a much more active role in? Baby Boomers fit into what I call Generation Cherry. Indeed, that is the title I gave my book on the subject. The profile is slightly wider than Baby Boomers, as Generation Cherry covers people in their fifties, sixties, seventies and eighties (possibly even forties and nineties). We can be classed as one broad group, and are so called, because we had a cherry on
Generation Cherry
Tim Drake
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For Immediate Release 92: Marketing failures of the UK’s Conservative Party

NHC
For Immediate Release 92: Marketing failures of the UK’s Conservative Party
Labour won social media election - Guardian front pageWe said we’d do one episode together of the For Immediate Release podcast as a ‘limited return engagement,’ emulating The Hobson and Holtz Report that Shel and I did for ten years. We did do that with episode 84 in April. We enjoyed it so much we decided to do another one, and so we recorded episode 92 yesterday. In keeping with our ‘hefty but good’ slogan, Shel and I enjoyed a conversation over an hour and forty minutes that covered a big agenda:

20 Highlights from Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends 2017 report

NHC
20 Highlights from Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends 2017 report
Meeker2017-slide002 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 all those slides right here. While many of the specific examples I’ve highlighted are from experiences in the USA,
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Cyberattack: The lack of serious intent for the NHS is not a role model

NevilleHobson.com
Cyberattack: The lack of serious intent for the NHS is not a role model
Nurse at computer One of the lingering impressions I have of the NHS is of an organization that’s cornered the market in laser-printer labels. That’s not to criticise or belittle an incredible public service in the UK that, in my experience, offers outstanding healthcare services at zero or low cost to patients. The provision of care is peerless; it’s how the organization is administered that isn’t. I recall hospital visits and physio sessions a few years ago when I suffered a leg injury where my appointments with different services in the NHS system exposed me to the admin side of things. While a particular specialist would be able to see my patient record on her computer screen, invariably she’d be unable to share that information digitally with other departments, or access information from my visits to those
Countries hit
Windows SMB Patch March 2017
Infographic
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Artificial intelligence survey finds UK public broadly optimistic

NevilleHobson.com
Artificial intelligence survey finds UK public broadly optimistic
pepper-robot
Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “Artificial intelligence survey finds UK public broadly optimistic” was written by Ian Sample Science editor, for theguardian.com on Monday 24th April 2017 23.01 UTC Apart from fears of mass unemployment, accidents with machinery, restrictions on freedom, increased economic inequality and a devalued human experience, the public are broadly optimistic about the arrival of artificial intelligence, according to one of the first surveys of British opinions about the technology. Research by the polling firm Ipsos Mori found nearly a third of people believe the risks of “machine learning” outweigh the benefits, while 36% believe the risks and benefits are balanced. Machine learning is technology that underpins internet searches, recommendations on Amazon and Netflix, and voice recognition on smartphones. The findings provide a snapshot of UK views on what some researchers regard as the early stages of
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Generation Z vs Millennials: There’s quite a difference

NevilleHobson.com
Generation Z vs Millennials: There’s quite a difference
Generation Z For much of the past decade, Millennials has been the generation that was the comparative one whenever anyone talked about behavioural and other differences between generations in contemporary society. Not only in the cultural and consumer contexts but also in the workplace. It’s fair to say that marketers and brand managers now understand a great deal about that generation in terms of behaviours, expectations, preferences and other consumer indicators. Employers understand much about them in terms of workplace expectations and behaviours. Yet I wonder whether there’s a fixation on Millennials that doesn’t see how time has passed and that there’s a next generation that requires attention, far more than has been given thus far, apparently. That generation is the so-called Generation Z and it comprises young people with markedly different characteristics to the generation immediately before, ie Millennials. As a
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Millennials-vs-Generation-Z-chart
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Facebook is Becoming a Social Operating System for Human Beings and Robots

At f8 2017, Facebook aims to become your social network for reality, augmented reality and virtual reality…really. In the heart of Silicon Valley, Facebook once again hosted its highly-anticipated developer conference, which, for the record, appeals to anyone who follows, designs for, or uses the world’s largest social network. Drawing an estimated 4,000 attendees from all around the world, Facebook’s news blurred the line between reality and virtual reality and human and robot engagement for users in their personal and professional lives. What’s clear is that the Facebook of yore, a social network once oft compared to Myspace, is long gone. This isn’t your previous selfie’s Facebook. This is something more from the future…a social OS that connects people, information and things in virtual and real worlds across devices and platforms. Skip the section below to get directly to Facbook’s new technology announcements… At nearly 2 billion users, Facebook is
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Takeaways on #BigData at #EuroComm17

NevilleHobson.com
Takeaways on #BigData at #EuroComm17
jigsaw puzzle Like everyone in the contemporary workplace, communicators confront information – data – on a scale unimaginable a decade ago. We’ve all heard the term “Big Data” but do we really understand what this means? Can we see what we must do right now to enable our competitive differentiation, operational effectiveness and early-mover advantage that are essential in the cognitive business era of the coming decade? In a presentation session at the IABC EuroComm 2017 conference in London next week, I’ll be joined by Jonathan Oldershaw, Research Director at Madano in London, to discuss and share information and insights on an area of increasing significance and importance to communicators. You’ll learn how providing colleagues and customers with knowledge and insights will enable everyone to work more effectively and efficiently; to focus on achieving an outcome and not the task list; to
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