Astroturfing and fake twitter accounts

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This ABC Background Briefing report confirms what we all know – PR types are full of lies and have no ethics. Oh – and all those hot chicks who are following you on Twitter? They’re fake. It’s all pat of creating fake grassroots movements to make clients look more influential than they really are. It’s called AstroTurfing. It’s a good listen. We wonder if the Public Relations Institute of Australia ex-communicated any members who appeared in the story?


That lucky farmer will soon be able to set his water on fire. Cool. Thanks Big Mining.

AstroTurfing (the practice of creating fake grassroots movement) has been around for a long time but the interweb has made it more effective than ever.  

For instance, have a look at this website that argues in favour of coal seam gas mining. Not exactly AstroTurfing but a classic example of how, in the lobbying age, the big guys are always willing to spend their dosh to create the appearance of a groundswell of support.

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Emcee Brett de Hoedt again judged short of perfection

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emceeing Australian INstitute of Company Directors


Having recently attained a score of 4.85 out of 5 for his conference emceeing in Brisbane, Brett de Hoedt was granted 4.44 out of 5 by the tribal chiefs (otherwise known as nonprofit directors) at a recent Australian Institute of Company Directors event in Melbourne. 

“I guess that’s a downward trend,” observed the media trainer and emcee who used the term “bollocks” twice in his AICD presentation about nonprofit marketing but declined to utilise PowerPoint.  

“Still; at least I have something to aim for,” he said. “I’m refusing all non-carbohydrates until I can find the extra .56 that separates me from perfection.”

The link between carbohydrates and public speaking remains unclear.

Jennifer Bate from the AICD ignored Brett’s request for pasta but added; “We have had some fantastic feedback. I hope you feel the effort was worthwhile; it certainly has been from the audience and the institute’s perspective.”



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Plotting how lobbyists do do their voodoo

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We think this diagram could be equally as relevant to tobacco, gaming, healthcare and other big-lobbying industries. 


This plan seems to have worked swell so far.


It’s the work of Riley E. Dunlap, regents professor of sociology at Oklahoma State University, and Aaron M. McCright, an associate professor of sociology at Michigan State University.  At least now we know what they do all day.


There are too many “I”s in the Colonel

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Churchill judged a better speechmaker than Kadafi - no wonder he's happy.

This LA Times piece compare Churchill to Kadafi in the speechmaking stakes. Guess who wins?

Crowdfunding: advice worth reading

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It grows on the interweb silly - not on trees.

‘Crowdfunding’ is one of those terms that the digerati and social entrepreneurs like to throw around. We suspect that it is similar to showbiz and dotcom case studies – one tale of success inspires thousands of failed attempts.

Regardless, this piece from Social Media Examiner is worth reading if you’re into free money from people who you have never met.

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Grammar geeks; lend me your ears.

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grammar girl

See? Told you she was cute.

We know that many of you give a damn about grammar. Hell; some of you even use the word “verb” to instead of “doing words”. Bless you. If you like to grammatically correct you should meet Grammar Girl. More than just rather cute, GG creates rather good audio lessons / editorials which can be heard with the click of a button. This one should be listened to by anyone who writes, as it addresses writing in the active voice.

Like me. Really, really like me. Say something. Please.

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Direct from the Department of Duh comes this revealing observation: asking people to like or comment on your Facebook leads to more likes and comments. A lot more.

Likes are easier to extract than comments. Do you ask? How often?

Is this important beyond ego gratification? Oh yes.

As we have said here, here, here and here  and here  and here and here creating interactions leads to a better EdgeRank meaning more of your Facebook content will be shared to more people, more often.

BTW – if you find this post at all helpful please use the social media buittons below to spread it.

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Sydney emcee meets vital organ about town

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Sydney emcee at conference

He's really a down to earth guy. Kinda quiet. Always smiling.

Cynics often claim that the life of an emcee is vacuous; filled with nothing more than champagne bubbles. Well they are correct. In what other role could you hobnob by the Harbour with larger-than-life Love Your Liver campaign mascot O’liver? (Well we suppose you could work in hepatitis prevention but that’s another story.)

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communication without trepidation

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Don't wait for a bigger or better reason - communicate.

We were delighted to see Victorian nonprofit Youth Projects demonstrate a true propensity for communications last week.

Youth Projects recently appointed new CEO Rodney Mackintosh and took the opportunity to send a snappily designed postcard to its mailing list announcing the fact.

Why bother? Well in essence the postcard is a defacto “hello” from both Youth Projects and Rodney. It’s a reminder that Youth Projects exists and will no doubt jolt people into making contact about matters that have been on their mind for months, if not years.

Great to see an organisation on the front foot like this. Would your organisation do this? If so, how long would it take to move from idea to mailbox?  If not; why not? Comments always welcome.


emcee declared 0.15 short of perfect

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best emcee in Australia

They shoot emcees do they?

Human perfection – in a heart surgeon, test pilot or emcee – is rare. Perhaps then we should not be surprised to learn that according to audience feedback Brett de Hoedt fell 0.15 short of perfection in his recent work as emcee at the Disability Employment Services 2011 conference; averaging 4.85 out of 5.

More surprisingly, was the feedback that one attendee wants him shot. Yes; shot as this feedback compilation  clearly states: DEA testimonials

Event organisers: is this the sort of feedback you’d like?

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