This Week in Digital...

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The Brits: How not to do PR

The Brit awards, the one night in the year when the countrys attention is transfixed on Arsenal v Bayern Munich the music industry's awards show. However the run up to this year's Brits was overshadowed by show sponsor Mastercard's PR agency being a tad overzealous with their demands of journalists. It all started when Telegraph diarist Tim Walker outed the agency's demands for specific tweets in return for receiving a ticket to the show.

Walker then sent off the agency's email to the Press Gazette, who ran the story which subsequently crashed the site due to the deluge of traffic.

The agencys email to Walker read:

"In return for this ticket we would like to ask that you agree to the following:

  • Social media support from both publication and personal Twitter feed
  • Pre event – e.g. 'Really excited to be heading down to @BRITAwards tonight with @MasterCardUK #PricelessSurprises'
  • Event night – live tweeting from the event including @MasterCardUK handle and #PricelessSurprises and to retweet @MasterCardUK tweets throughout the night where appropriate
  • Post event – tweet directing followers to @MasterCardUK BRITs YouTube videos
  • Pre-event coverage of MasterCards Priceless Surprise video edits with either Laura Mvula, Kylie Minogue and/or Pharrell Williams – to include full credit for MasterCardUK and #PriclessSurprises
  • All features to be pushed on publications social feeds – to include @MasterCardUK and #PricelessSurprises
  • MasterCard inclusion in post event write-up (print and online) including #PriclessSurprises hashtag and URL
  • Post event write up presence on publication homepage (where possible)."

It didn't end there though, not only did #PricelessSurprises end up trending because of the number of people tweeting about the gaffe, the story was also picked up by other publications and in the end both the agency and Mastercard had to release statements in response to the furore.



The Brits: How to do PR

Irish bookmaker Paddy Power is renowned for its ambush marketing and it didn't disappoint on Wednesday. Paddy sent a couple of chaps posing as Daft Punk to the red carpet, who while firmly fixed in the paparazzi glare revealed some conspicuously placed marketing.

Lib Dems use 404 page to tackle Labours Balls

Now we like to keep this blog apolitical, but this was really too good to pass over. The Liberal Democrats stopped lying about tuition fees for a moment and came up with this cracking 404 page that doubles as a political attack on Labours economic policy.


Facebook splashes the cash on WhatsApp

Another week another billion dollar purchase by a tech giant. This week saw Facebook make its biggest ever buy in the form of the $19 billion acquisition of messaging service WhatsApp. Facebook founder and owner Mark Zuckerberg said of the deal: "WhatsApp is on a path to connect one billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable."

In an interesting side story it emerged the WhatsApp co-owner Brian Acton had in fact been rejected for a job at Facebook in 2009.


Google Glass commandments

Google released its do's and dont's for its new wearable technological spectacles this week. The commandments are more PR than actual helpful guide as Google Glass – despite already having approximately 300 million news articles written on the subject. Yes Im aware of the irony – are still not available to the public. The do's include: explore the world around you and use screen lock, while the dont's warn against being creepy aka a Glasshole.