FIR 184: An Incomprehensible Disaster


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The June 2019 edition of “The Hobson and Holtz Report,” aka FIR 184, features Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz talking about these stories:
  • Boeing’s Max 737 crisis is a textbook case of ignoring standards of crisis communication
  • Mary Meeker’s annual Internet Trends report has a lot of meat for communicators
  • Privacy policies are an incomprehensible disaster
  • North Face and its ad agency thought it was clever gaming Wikipedia. Now they’re sorry.
  • A privacy issue with precise-location tagging led Twitter to remove the feature despite some noble uses for it.
  • Is voice overhyped…even as an Alexa Skill takes home a big prize at Cannes Lions?
  • Dan York’s Tech Report from WordCamp Europe 2019
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music. Links from This Week’s Episode

SDF Podcast 28: Summertime Special


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Turkeys
Show notes by Sam Knowles. In England’s distant past, long before the spread of wealth and the explosive growth of the middle classes, holidays were a rarity. Overseas holidays were unheard of, except for those gilded few who’d grown fat on the Empire and took a ‘grand tour’ of Europe for months at a time, or else went off to add new lands to said Empire. The closest most workers got to any kind of holiday was being taken in a charabanc to the nearest seaside resort, where enforced fun would be had on piers stretching out into coastal waters. One of the highlights of such a visit would be an end-of-the-pier show, where metropolitan idols would perform song-and-dance, music hall routines for the masses. The shows were often billed as Summertime Specials. In the world of the Small Data Forum podcast, this latest episode – 28 already –
Tell the truth
The price to pay
Sam Knowles
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FIR 183: Let’s get personal


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The May 2019 edition of “The Hobson and Holtz Report,” aka For Immediate Release episode 183, features Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz talking about these stories:
  • A trio of technologies — from Google, Amazon, and The New York Times — show how marketers will be able to get into your head, assess your emotional state, and manipulate your intent.
  • GDPR is one year old. Has it succeeded in protecting Europeans’ privacy?
  • PR professionals are relegating earned media to the dustbin.
  • Arabic podcasts are on the rise, embracing a long tradition of oral storytelling.
  • More CEOs were terminated in 2018 over ethical lapses than financial performance.
  • The Wall Street Journal is limiting comments to paying subscribers, and it’s working.
  • Dan York reports on a new podcast report from Andreesen-Horowitz and looks at two podcast announcements from Spotify.
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music.

Listen Now

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FIR 183: Let’s get personal


This post is by neville@nevillehobson.com (Neville Hobson) from Neville Hobson


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The May 2019 edition of “The Hobson and Holtz Report,” aka For Immediate Release episode 183, features Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz talking about these stories:
  • A trio of technologies — from Google, Amazon, and The New York Times — show how marketers will be able to get into your head, assess your emotional state, and manipulate your intent.
  • GDPR is one year old. Has it succeeded in protecting Europeans’ privacy?
  • PR professionals are relegating earned media to the dustbin.
  • Arabic podcasts are on the rise, embracing a long tradition of oral storytelling.
  • More CEOs were terminated in 2018 over ethical lapses than financial performance.
  • The Wall Street Journal is limiting comments to paying subscribers, and it’s working.
  • Dan York reports on a new podcast report from Andreesen-Horowitz and looks at two podcast announcements from Spotify.
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music.

Listen Now

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FIR 182: Hot Bee Action


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Beesexual
The April 2019 episode of “For Immediate Release: The Hobson & Holtz Report” features co-hosts Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz discussing the following topics:
  • How China is shaping the future of shopping — it’s online, social, and highly appealing to Gen Z
  • Media coverage of local news is evaporating. Should business pick up the slack?
  • Customer reviews are the new content marketing, says Jay Baer
  • Movements mean more than brand purpose. Just look at Pornhub’s new movement to save the bees.
  • The UK government has added 12,000 pieces of information to Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa
  • When you think of Augmented Reality, do you think of audio? You should.
  • Dan York reports on MindNode 6, WordPress 5.2, Pocket, Minnesota’s “Right to Repair” legislation, and Mozilla’s move away from IRC.
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music.
FIR 182

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SDF Podcast 27: When April Fool’s meets Groundhog Day


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Brexit
So this is the episode when the three stooges of the SmallDataForum were meant to reflect wistfully on what was Great Britain exiting Greater Europe. The irony of recording this on April Fool’s Day wasn’t lost on us. Brexit Fool’s day is every day, these days. Our resident classicist Sam even managed to squeeze in Juvenal’s Satire VI, and even though the reference was in regard to another April Fool’s – Facebook regulation, haha – Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes might just as well mean “who regulates the regulators?” Ah – wouldn’t that be The Great British Electorate? Well, they have spoken, just over 1,000 days ago. And what they said, means what it means. Fool’s Day and any other day. After our recording, the Prime Minister finally reached out to the Leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition to figure out how to move forward. Or sideways. Or move at
Infinity
Cybersecurity
Thomas Stoeckle
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Near futures at scale


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On March 9, a technology trends report was published that is breathtaking in in scope and scale. Comprising a PDF of more than 380 pages, the 2019 Tech Trends Report from the Future Today Institute covers hundreds of trends in areas ranging from artificial intelligence and advanced robotics, to home automation and the Internet of Things, to workplace and learning technologies, smart cities and much more. As the publisher describes it:
This report is intentionally broad and robust. We have included a list of adjacent uncertainties, a detailed analysis of 315 tech trends, a collection of weak signals for 2020, and more than four dozen scenarios describing plausible near futures. Do not try to read it in one sitting. Begin with the Executive Summary and Keywords, then review the top tech trends listed for your industry.
Some good advice here. I started reading it yesterday, quickly realising that this is
Key Takeaways
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Emerging tech: Your bookmark for 2019


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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 155: Did neglect kill SlideShare?


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slideshare-tombstone For the September episode of the monthly Hobson & Holtz Report podcast, aka FIR 155, I was the solo host with Shel away. Doing the show like this reminded me of the old days of FIR when Shel and I recorded a weekly show for over ten years, where one of us would typically do it all solo if the other was away. This was one of those times! Anyway, you have a show to listen to so here’s what’s in this month’s H&H Report: In his Tech
FIR155graphic
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SDF Podcast 21: Attention, meaningful content and post-apocalyptic novels


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monitor Our latest podcast ended up being a tad longer than planned – clearly a sign of a lively, engaged discussion. In talking about various aspects of the attention economy, we managed to hold each other’s attention for a good 45 minutes. This episode’s show notes were written by Thomas Stoeckle. Many ‘attention economists’ these days quote Nobel Laureate Herbert Simon and his observation that a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention. It is certainly a quote that has aged well, and one can only wonder what Simon would make of the world now, 47 years on from his famous statement. Sam doesn’t quite see the crisis of attention that brands often lament. But quality and controllability matter more than ever, and producers of content – especially the advertising and media industries – need to up their game to stay relevant. Users control their online experience through ad blockers
WTF
Thomas Stoeckle
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For Immediate Release 152: LOL (TM)


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Febreze Neville Hobson joined FIR host Shel Holtz for the August edition of The Hobson and Holtz Report on the FIR Podcast Network. Topics included…
  • P&G is attempting to trademark common Internet acronyms, including LOL.
  • Texting has become a common tool in political campaigns. Will it find its way into marketing?
  • Gen Zers will outnumber Millennials within a year. There are implications for communicators.
  • Should your company be on IGTV?
  • A look at vanished technologies from Gartner’s 2017 hypecycle of emerging technologies.
  • Engagement on Facebook is plummeting.
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music.

Listen Now

(Or download the MP3 file) Links from this episode:

Twitter removes fake followers to build trust in follower counts


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Twitter profile If you’ve noticed a sudden drop in the number of people following you on Twitter, the likeliest reason would be action taken by Twitter last week as part of its efforts to build trust and confidence in follower counts – the number of people who follow others on the social network. In an announcement posted on July 11, Twitter said it had begun a global action to remove suspicious accounts from users’ followers, describing it as a step to improve Twitter and ensure everyone can have confidence in their followers.
As a result, the number of followers displayed on many profiles may go down. Most people will see a change of four followers or fewer; others with larger follower counts will experience a more significant drop. We understand this may be hard for some, but we believe accuracy and transparency make Twitter a more trusted service for public conversation.
Before and After
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For Immediate Release 143: Fired by mistake by an AI


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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?


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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
fir-126-promoart
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SDF Podcast 16 – Trust, communication clarity, balanced news and tech heretics


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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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Future digital banking trends that apply to almost any consumer-facing business


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Each year, my friend Jim Marous assembles some of the industry’s most interesting perspectives on retail banking trends and predictions for the year ahead. I was invited back to share my thoughts (thank you Jim!) Although, looking back, I still stand by my ideas from the previous two years. I wanted to share the highlights from the report and also my contributions to this year’s list of trends/predictions. I also included ideas from previous years to help financial executives see the bigger picture.

Top 10 Retail Banking Trends and Predictions for 2018

Top Strategic Retail Banking Priorities for 2018

Customer experience is driving digital transformation. But, retail banking isn’t alone in this. All customer experiences in every industry need an upgrade and modernization to compete for “Generation-C.
“All banks must prioritize UX, design thinking and experience architecture to compete for the future right now. This is a
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For Immediate Release 122: Trust, influence, pharma and more


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Neville Hobson
For Immediate Release 122: Trust, influence, pharma and more
community The January installment of The Hobson & Holtz Report brings Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz together in a long-form podcast that covers a handful of topical issues. We start with the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer including the role of influencers as influence marketing efforts move from agencies to in-house departments. Next, the rise of live-streaming video with 95% of executives planning to use it this year. Then, which pharma companies are winning at social? We look at the results of a survey that ranks the top 22 firms and offers insights into why the leaders are leading. An upscale US department store is encouraging customers to follow employees’ personal social media accounts. We discuss the pros and cons. Finally, we consider the possibility that we soon will be gesturing at instead of talking to our smart devices (and we
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The appeal of the open Internet


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Neville Hobson
The appeal of the open Internet
When I reflect on my career over the past few decades, I think about three constants that have always been present no matter the type of work I have done or with whom I have done it. Those three constants comprise business, communication and technology. None of them is separate from the other, yet each of them is a tool of empowerment in its distinct way. Although I have a passion for technology, my larger passion is about communication. It’s about using technology as a means to a communication end – enabling people to naturally connect with and engage with each other, whether within the same organization or with others elsewhere; and helping organizations realize the measurable benefits from a social approach to communication, doing business, building and nurturing community, and fostering a climate of trust. I reflected more on these things
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2018: the year of chatbots, AI and digital personal assistants


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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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SDF Podcast 14: Looking forward by looking back


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Neville Hobson
SDF Podcast 14: Looking forward by looking back
Janus As the Small Data Forum progresses through its early teenage years – our latest podcast is episode 14 already – regular co-hosts Thomas Stoeckle, Neville Hobson, and Sam Knowles are taking the opportunity to look forward by looking back. Patients of our own medicine, you might say, we’re using the year end and what we’ve observed and learned in 2017 to enter the predictive analytics business. We take our inspiration from Janus, the Roman god of beginnings, transitions, and time, after whom January is named. A sculpture of Janus appears at the top of this blog, from the Vatican Museum. This episode’s show notes were written by Sam Knowles.

In our latest pod, we’re all making our predictions for what we expect to see happen in 2018

Notably, in how we believe organisations will make better use of data
Sam Knowles
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