E27 Unconference: “PR 2.0” by Text100 (session 3)

E27 SG IV Unconference @ SMU
Track 1, Session 3 : 8.45pm to 9.15pm
“PR 2.0” by Su Min and Liyi from Text100

Third up was PR 2.0 by two ladies from Text100, namely Su Min and Liyi. They talked about the new media ecology as popularly cited in the U.S., then leaned towards how they didn’t see this happening in Singapore. I don’t know about you, but I found it pretty upsetting that they didn’t see enough evidence that the grassroots media was actually taking hold in Singapore.

Coleman Yee gave the example of his friend’s establishment called “Pitstop Cafe” which has a blog that customers could feedback to (Borat sez “very nice!”). I cited examples of the Singapore Elections in 2006 where political bloggers became overnight sensations, at times hoarding more attention than traditional news media outlets such as the Straits Times (i.e. Yawning Bread’s Hougang Field Rally Photo). A fellow instructor (Ang Moh guy; didn’t catch his name) behind me mentioned how unhappy bank customers might complain via blogs, but they don’t really have a choice since there’s the “locked-in” effect where customers can’t switch banks as readily as businesses like cafes. As such, the Ang Moh guy argues that banks are less threatened to respond to blogs.

They later asked how PR agencies needed to redefine their role. I gave some ideas and so did the others, but at this point I was really wondering if they were really sharing anything with participants, or if they were just soliciting for ideas. Unconferences are about creating opportunities for ideas to emerge, and though these ladies tried to get some genuine conversation going, I don’t think any of us learnt anything substantially new. Given such a fun topic, it could have really brought us places. All is not lost though, as the lady in white dress did look cute squinting whenever I yakked (probably thought I was sprouting nonsense).

6 thoughts on “E27 Unconference: “PR 2.0” by Text100 (session 3)

  1. What I couldn’t understand is why these two girls would stand before a room of Singapore Web 2.0 experts and bloggers and say that they don’t believe the social media is making much of an impact as it is in the US. I guess they’re entitled to their opinion. My understanding and observation is that the social media is powerful and influential, right now major corporations and governments are not ignoring the voices, they are just holding back as they don’t know how to react. Very soon they will begin to talk back and the ironic thing is that they would probably use their PR agency. Text 100 guys, don’t just take it as it comes. Believe in it!

  2. Ben: Right, perhaps instead of waiting for a sign, the right thing to do would be to internalize social media into existing PR practices by having employees blog. In Wayne Gretzky’s words: “Some people skate to the puck. I skate to where the puck is going to be.”

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