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End Embargos on Company News

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I get a lot of pitches and press releases these days. An intriguing media advisory crossed my in-box this afternoon about student use of social networks. I was all set to grab the PDF of the study and blog about it until I saw this on the release:

“The report, available now for media only…is embargoed until Tuesday, August 14, at 12:01 a.m.”

I followed the link and got the PDF. But unless the National School Boards Association considers bloggers to be “media,” I probably shouldn’t have been able to. In fact, I probably shouldn’t have received the advisory. It has been noted fairly widely that bloggers in general feel no obligation to abide by journalistic standards. I could blog the hell out of an embargoed document.

I won’t, though. Having been a newspaper reporter (a long, long time ago), and having been in the role of distributing information like this on behalf of organizations, I feel compelled to honor these requests. But organizations sending this kind of material need to be more circumspect. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the report’s contents broadly communicated well before next Tuesday, given this kind of cavalier distribution. Frankly, given today’s communication landscape, the rationale behind emabrgoed news seems to have evaporated.

The advisory included a press release, which also is embargoed until the 14th. Maybe I’ll remember to blog about it then, but don’t count on it. I’ll be on the road and will have undoubtedly received hundreds of additional emails by then. Chalk it up as a lost opportunity based on a poorly thought-out communication plan.

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End Embargos on Company News
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