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Chris Warfield
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Looks like we have our "PR success story or mishap" to discuss with Mike on our next call...
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Common sense rules the day. Companies with very public and long-standing profiles -- such as MSFT, GOOG, Y! -- have many employee bloggers that openly criticize or question their company's decision making, call out faults of products, and talk about industry trends, etc. Some folks were fired over the content of their blogs in the early days, but more recently these folks have been given more reign. At MSFT the guideline was that folks could not discuss products before they were announced, nothing illegal, be professional, and to bring it full circle - use common sense at to what should and shouldn't be posted. It gets a bit more tricky with emerging companies that in the process of defining themselves in the marketplace. Folks at these companies might want separate work and personal blogs, and/or flag content that is work related for marketing and PR before they receive the blog via a Google alert. Another example that comes to mind of an employee being asked to take down or pass protect a blog -- a fresh-out-of-college former colleague at Wagged had some very, um, explicit, party pics on her MySpace page. The page also noted that she worked at Wagged. She got a call from HR shortly after her first day of work, and edits were made to her site. Generally, employee blogs are a great way to humanize a company, and to provide information that is stripped of marketing jargon, but keep those pics of that great senior-year Halloween party on a password protected site;-)
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