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Does IABC's Chairman Need Help Blogging?

The IABC Chairman's blog is off to a slow start. That's understandable, perhaps. But that it took a big step toward being a PR puff-maker this morning is not understandable, if IABC realizes what a blog should be.

In David Kistle's first entry, he invited us all to "Give me some feedback – good and bad – about how we’re doing and what’s important to you. I look forward to matching wits with more experienced bloggers and giving all of you a chance to tell me what’s on your mind."

Almost a week ago, member Leila Zogby took him up on that, asking:

"Dave, This organization seems to be getting more focused on internal communications. This latest issue of CW Online has 95% employee communications articles. The LA conference was so dominated by this topic that it was difficult to feel you got a well-rounded sampling of information...

"Requests to try to expand coverage of the larger communications world in the magazine, Web site and conference sessions seem to go unheeded. What gives? Have you all decided to go back to let IABC return to its internal communications roots and let other organizations tackle the rest?

"This would not seem to jive with your growth strategy."


I anticipated a swift respose from Kistle. Partly because the post offers a fine opportunity to speak from the bully pulpit about the future of IABC. And partly because the post gives him the first outstanding chance to start a blogging "conversation".

Instead, Kistle waited most of a week and then directed Communication World editor Natasha Spring to respond with a numbing analysis, in which she tallies recent CW articles for their "internal" and "external" content.

David-cum-Natasha's answer to Leila is "We don't really have an answer we are prepared to give".

Well, I suppose that is conversation, after a fashion, although not the one most people expect of a blog.

But what's worse is this: Spring closes with "If you can spare a few minutes, please send me a note with your thoughts."

That's what Zogby did! But what Kistle-Spring seem to assume is that a) a non-answer is OK on a blog and b) if you want a real answer, submit your question again off-line.

None of this is surprising: blogging is new to many "bosses". But IABC's Chairman needs to think harder -- much harder -- about what blogging is supposed to be.

Call it a rocky start... one that can be corrected. But one that must be corrected for his credibility, and IABC's. Idea: send David to the New Communication Forum?

Allan Jenkins posted this at 20:12. Permalink |


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