Friday, August 19, 2011
This is an interesting speculation. It asks if the same way that one communicates locally can be taken nationally. The question is being asked about Texas Governor Rick Perry, some of whose opinions are controversial with the national media. From a new media point of view, there is no difference between local and national. What one says locally is international on the internet. On the other hand, it needn't be because few may be paying attention to what is said locally. So, the governor is being "unveiled" to the public at large in his presidential campaign. This raises a practical issue for PR practitioners. Can one still control news locally? The answer to that is a wishy-washy yes and no. It depends on the news. Years ago when we worked for an international electronics company, the corporation was still under the mistaken belief that it could introduce products in Europe and Japan without spillover into the US. Of course, it never worked because the internet was ablaze with features, functions and benefits of the new products from the moment the media saw them in Tokyo or Paris. On the other hand, some of Gov. Perry's opinions apparently were never considered on the national scene until he declared himself a candidate, and client news about local factory production and hiring often never travels beyond a town's TV or newspaper. So, it is still possible to segment information, but the danger is that one never quite knows when the segmentation can be breached and a local item becomes national.