Don't hold it that way

July 2nd, 2010

John Gruber's Translation From Apple's Unique Dialect of PR-Speak to English of the 'Letter From Apple Regarding iPhone 4':

The iPhone 4 has been the most successful product launch in Apple's history. It has been judged by reviewers around the world to be the best smartphone ever, and users have told us that they love it. So we were surprised when we read reports of reception problems, and we immediately began investigating them. Here is what we have learned.

We cannot believe we had to write this fucking letter. [...]

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A no-win situation. (Or, why fan pages for multinational corporations are a terrible idea.)

March 28th, 2010

Sometimes the sight of multinational corporation embracing social media ain't pretty. In the midst of a discussion about a controversy over the environmental practices of some of Nestle's suppliers, a company spokesperson told posters to the company's Facebook page not to use amended versions of the company's logo as their profile picture on the company's page, on pain of having the offending icons deleted:

Paul Griffin: Not sure you're going to win friends in the social media space with this sort of dogmatic approach. I understand that you're on your back-foot due to various issues not excluding Palm Oil but Social Media is about embracing your market, engaging and having a conversation rather than preaching! Read www.cluetrain.com and rethink!

Nestle: Thanks for the lesson in manners. Consider yourself embraced. But it's our page, we set the rules, it was ever thus.

"Consider yourself embraced." Someone give that spokesbot a pay rise.

[Via The Browser]

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"A moral code that makes The Punisher look like Abraham Lincoln."

February 25th, 2010

Marina Hyde on Max Clifford:

It seems unthinkable now that, back in the mid-90s, this philosopher-publicist would feel obliged to explain that he was miffed about something to do with the NHS in order to justify his brokering of exposés of Tory sleaze. Thankfully, we live in more enlightened times, and not only does Max no longer have to explain why stuff he does is in the public interest, he has slowly but inexorably assumed the role of authority figure in a society searching for heroes it can believe in.

Above all it's the tone of voice – that calm, reasonable, slighty weary ­delivery that allows him to make the most ludicrous moral and logical leaps, only for people to say later "actually Max Clifford was speaking a lot of sense". This week, Max announced that he would be representing the stunningly idiotic Christine Pratt, founder of the confidential bullying helpline who waded into the No 10 row. "She wants to stand up and be counted," explained Max, presumably already counting, "and I've said the only way you're going to change the public and the media's perception is to come up with evidence of what you've been saying." So Christine's currently going through all her emails from victims who contacted her under condition of anonymity, and is going to take them to Max Clifford. Like I say, the guy talks a lot of sense. See also his sighing that the media should give Cheryl Cole some space, in wall-to-wall appearances in said media this week.

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These are not the hoodies you're looking for

September 19th, 2009

Tesco's corporate communications department earned their money this week.

Daniel Jones, also known by his Jedi name Morda Hehol, was asked to leave a Tesco store after he refused to remove his hood. He's claiming that the tenets of his religion require him to wear a hood in public, as thus Tesco breached his right to religious freedom. The firm's response:

Tesco said: "He hasn't been banned. Jedis are very welcome to shop in our stores although we would ask them to remove their hoods."

"Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Luke Skywalker all appeared hoodless without ever going over to the Dark Side and we are only aware of the Emperor as one who never removed his hood.

"If Jedi walk around our stores with their hoods on, they'll miss lots of special offers."

Nicely done, though if it were up to me I'd have dropped that last line. Ending on the implication that perhaps Morda Hehol is a Sith would have been much better IMHO. But then, I suppose the firm felt it just had to remind us all that they have lots of special offers. You know, just in case we'd all forgotten that Tesco are a supermarket chain.1

[Via Feeling Listless Miniblog]

  1. But then, perhaps they just knew that nitpickers all over the internet would pick up on this, and in writing about it would inevitably end up repeating the point that Tesco really want to get across, i.e. that Tesco stores have lots of special offers. Strong in the Dark Side, these communications professionals are…

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