Disney’s It’s A Small World Turns 50

Disney’s iconic attraction, It’s A Small World is officially over the hill and had one of the biggest birthday bashes the mouse has ever thrown. The celebration was an international event that started weeks ago with the creation of SmallWorld50.com, which allowed visitors to create a video of themselves singing along to the iconic tune or allowed them to create their very own It’s A Small World doll. Each doll created donated one dollar to the internationally known charity, UNICEF. Each of Disney’s 5 parks also had their very own ways of celebration. Check out all the Disney fun in this storify.

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The Many Cities of Christine

Above is a map with three cities that are near and dear to my heart. The first city, marked with a blue marker, is the city where I spent the majority of my childhood. The city is called Montville and is nestled in the northern region of New Jersey. The  second city is a  city I’ve ventured into many times and find completely intriguing. From the invention of one of the most delicious sandwiches (the cheesesteak), to art museums, and an all-star bar scene, Philadelphia is a city I love to visit time and time again and is marked in green on the map. Lastly, there has been a city I’ve dreamed of seeing. From gondolas on river streets and the taste of the most exquisite Italian cuisine, Venice, Italy is somewhere I have yearned to visit. This romantic destination is marked in red on the map above.

PR Pitch Tips: Do’s and Don’ts

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This infographic can be found on http://www.intersectionconsulting.com/ and is created by Brian Solis

Many PR professionals think they know the basics about pitching their story or event to journalists. However, what many don’t know, is that by utilizing these basic tools in the improper way, they could be sabotaging their own pitch

Here are some ways that a PR professional can provide a solid pitch to journalists via social media and the ever-popular e-mail pitch. 

Ahhh… the ever-powerful social media pitch. Most people in the PR-world know that a targeted, well-written pitch over social media, like Twitter, can provide results. However, most professionals take to firing out the same tweet to dozens of journalists, and when those journalists check out your Twitter and see you’ve sent the same tweet to many other people-Busted. Here are some tips to help pitches over social media. 

  • Keep it small- Don’t fire out tons of the same tweets to tons of different journalists. Send specific, customized, targeted tweets to journalists that will be interested in the topic your story covers. 
  • Build relationships- Build relationships with key bloggers. Constructing relationships with bloggers will guarantee their interest will be peaked when they see you trying to sell them a story. 

Building on top of pitching over social media, is the widely used e-mail pitch. When pitching to a journalist over e-mail, there are two main tips one should keep in mind. 

  • Do your research- Time and time again, journalists in California will receive e-mails from PR professionals about covering a story in Colorado. Make sure you take the time to research the journalists you plan to pitch to to make sure they cover the topic your story is about and are in the general geographic area. 
  • Don’t over-follow up- Sending a follow-up e-mail multiple times a day or even multiple times a week can bombard and irk journalists to the point where they won’t even open an e-mail sent by you. Only send ONE follow-up email to journalists that you know will be an ideal fit for your story. 

Using these tips, you should be able to create the perfect pitch over social media or via e-mail that will generate the results you and your client are looking for. 

reflections on optimism and caution about social media

Social media has hit the modern age by storm. Over 50% of the global community uses sites like Twitter, Facebook, and others to stay in constant contact with their personal friends, meet new people, or stay up to date with current events. Sites like Twitter are making a new revolution for journalism. Twitter allows average people to post in 140 characters what they feel or see during the course of their day.

An example was offered in the first reading we had to complete titled, “The People Formerly Known as the Audience.” The murder of Osama Bin Laden was first published on Twitter and then confirmed by the Obama Administration an hour later.  Another example offered by this article was the fact that a picture of what was supposedly Bin Laden’s bloody face went viral on the internet the following day, however was quickly exposed as a fake on Twitter. Sites like Twitter allow for the gatekeeper function in journalism to become minimal and only offered in traditional news outlets and news organizations.

With millions of people switching from participating in an audience role to becoming reporters in themselves, social media has allowed the average person to post eye witness accounts of major events as they occur. This allows for an optimistic view of social media from a majority of people. However, others would disagree and state that gatekeepers in the trade of journalism are still needed and that not all news presented on social media is democratic.  In “Beyond Gingras: Tech Innovation Alone Will Not Democratize Media” a less optimistic view is presented. It states that the Twitter revolution is one that has become blown way out of proportion and that the same corporate giants that control traditional news outlets remain in control in the digital realm of social media as well.

Another article titled, “The Daily Me” also presents a bleak outlook on the social media revolution.  The article explains that if the public has taken over the role of gatekeeper then “God save us from ourselves.” This is because most public only publishes information that is biased towards their personal prejudices. Most people who use social media pursue readings of blogs that provide arguments that agree with their beliefs and opinions of the world around them. Most people who use social media also don’t provide information  based on sensible arguments like news outlets, but rather by their emotions and beliefs. The age of objective news would be thrown out the window making way for the new era where people can pick and choose which sites agree with them and intelligent debates are tossed out the window.

Christine Ambriano's observations about the new social media revolution.

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