As a social media mom and an advocate of social media in my professional life, I love The Bloggess. I loved her even more after the chicken post (that's like $200 of chicken for free) and I'm seriously considering the purchase of a mini Beyonce from her store.
For those of you who don't know, The Bloggess is a massively popular -- and rather irreverant -- blogger. She has influence and reach, two things PR folks would love to use to their clients' advantage. However, Jenny (The Bloggess has a real name!) got tired of PR pitches that had nothing to do with her blog and asked Wil Wheaton to help her out with a response to those off-kilter PR pitches. He did, because Wil Wheaton is cool like that, and she's been sending it out for around a year now. Yesterday, a PR firm took exception.
And then one of the firm's vice presidents called her a nasty name... through a 'reply all' email.
All together now... Ouch!
Now this could have happened to a million bloggers.. well, maybe a thousand... or at least a couple of hundred. But it happened to The Bloggess. And when Jose the vice president gave a half-hearted apology that illustrated his lack of understanding of the audience to which he spoke...
Let's just say that the last 24 hours have been a little rough for good ol' Jose.
Jenny blogged about it. Twitter blew up. The PR firm's Facebook page was flooded. And then Wil Wheaton blogged about it. Because he's cool like that.
To sum up, for those of you who don't feel like clicking 80 gajillion links: PR firms need to treat the internet as a respectable marketing channel, rather than some newfangled gimick. As such, the people who populate the internet channels - i.e., bloggers, tweeters, facebookers, YouTube-rs (yes, I made that up) etc. - need to be treated with respect. If a PR firm would like to pitch a blogger, GREAT! Put together a professional pitch, offer appropriate compensation and open a discussion. But don't spam every blogger on the internet with a pantyhose pitch (and yes, I got it, too - if I had a dollar for every blogger who appears to have received that email, I could buy an island). Don't come to the table with a "we're better than you" attitude. Do understand the medium and the target audience. Above all, don't be Jose.
And if you're over the whole #PRfail and/or you really don't get what the fuss is all about, then at least read the chicken post and thank me later.