Thursday, March 12, 2015

Twenty years ago - How good were the online predictions?

In 1995 Dr Reginald Watts, Dr Jon White, Tom Brannan and I explored the future in a Public Relations future gazing symposium for the, then, Institute of Public Relations.

I was reminded of my contribution earlier today. After 20 years, I don't think I want to change any of the words:

‘The new media will enfranchise the individual with more one-to-one, one to many and many to many communication which will be easy by personal ‘phones, E-mail and video conferencing. Person-to-person-to machine and database communication will be more important, electronically managed and more global.

'Increasingly this broth threatens brands and corporate reputation and needs professionalism to immunise (our organisations) or doctor the effects of the brew.

‘In its most perfect form, reputation management sustains relationships with publics in a state of equilibrium during both evolution and in crisis. This enhances corporate goodwill (a tradable asset).

‘The big change is that many-to-many global communication brings with it loss of ‘ownership’ of language, culture and knowledge and that there is a breakdown in intellectual property rights, copyright and much plagiarism. This is already a major problem.

‘News now travels further and faster and is mixed with history, fantasy and technology. Reputation in crisis is even more vulnerable. At a growing rate, the new media uses reputation as ‘merchandise’, stripped from the foundations which created it, then traded for pieces of silver - and at a discount. ...'