Posted on December 30, 2013 by Josh Morgan
This isn’t a PR-related post. It’s a reminder to check out cool things around you post. We live about four miles from Folsom Lake. During the summer, we have a ski boat in a slip there. The lake is formed by a dam across the American River. It is currently at 22% capacity. When the lake is this low, you can visit remains of the old gold rush town of Mormon Island that was flooded when the lake was built.
Pretty much everything you see below is normally at least fifty feet underwater. If you are near Sacramento, go check it out.
Looking north into Folsom Lake from Brown’s Ravine.
The “Natoma Ditch,” which was begun in 1851 to funnel water for gold mining.
Amazing rock wall that I believe was part of a dairy.
Detail showing the craftmanship of the rock wall.
Artifacts found and piled by others on a piece of the foundation.
Some of the old articles I have found, point to this being either the remains of the Red Bank Winery or a dairy.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tagged: californiagoldrush, californiahistory, eldoradocounty, eldoradohills, folsomlake, goldrush, mormonisland | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 27, 2013 by Josh Morgan
This Christmas most of the gifts given and received by my family were created by or bought from someone local. One of these has a bit of a story behind it.
Let’s start with Maude. Maude is our yellow lab. Here’s a picture of Maude that I took this Summer at Sea Ranch on the Sonoma coast.
Now fast forward a bit and my stepmother asked my wife for a copy of the photo. We weren’t sure why, until on Christmas morning we opened:
The painting was by an artist from Chico named Lee Wright. At first glance, it’s a dog painting. But there’s more. Lee is using art to move forward from being homeless. Through commissions, he has now moved into his own housing and continues to create. If you would like to support Lee, go to Art Etc, in Chico or find Lee on Facebook. Who knows maybe you’ll find something else there too.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tagged: art etc., lee wright | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 17, 2013 by Josh Morgan
It’s no Dollar Shave Club or Christmas Jammies and the Santa kinda creeps me out, but looks like a good product and shows that not all product videos need to have multiple sets and dancing.
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Posted on December 16, 2013 by Josh Morgan
One of the trends in public relations right now is “telling stories,” as opposed to “communicating messages.” Of course you are still communicating key messages to targeted audiences, you’re just doing it in a different way. Today in the car NPR replayed an interview by the late Peter “No Prisoners!” O’Toole that was recorded in 1993 with Terry Gross. It is a masterclass in the telling of short stories.
Here’s a short example, but I encourage you to listen to the entire interview and challenge you to not be entertained and inspired:
On getting into the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art
A chum of mine — who intended to be a painter — and I hitchhiked our way into London to begin our lives and we jumped off the lorry, the truck, at a station called Houston and we were aiming for a men’s hostel. … And we were plodding down [the street] and I looked on my left and it said, “The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art” and my chum said, “Well, if you’re going to be an actor this is the kind of shop where they deal with such matters, so why don’t you pop in?” So I popped in and I saw a bust of Bernard Shaw, and I was looking at the bust of Bernard Shaw and … the sergeant commissionaire joined me at the bust and we started yawning about Bernard Shaw telling stories. … And we were joined by a joined by an elderly, burly, gruff gentleman and he turned out to be the principal of the Royal Academy. He asked me if I was a student, and I said I wasn’t but I was thinking of being. And one thing led to another and I found myself, that afternoon even, turning up for the first interview and then I did an audition and [another] audition, and found, to my surprise that I was in.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tagged: peter o'toole, public relations, storytelling | Leave a comment »
Posted on November 19, 2013 by Josh Morgan
Quite often us PR folks are asked, “Hey can you fix this Wikipedia entry for our company?” Sometimes it’s that something is inaccurate, but more often it’s that things aren’t phrased exactly how they’d like. Let me save you a lot of time. The answer is almost often, no. The reason is sock puppets and meat puppets. Wait…what?
In short, sock puppetry is Wikipedia speak for creating a false identity to influence an entry. Similarly meat puppetry is convincing others to create accounts to support one’s side in a dispute.
Why this post today? Over the past few months several “PR firms” have been advertising that they can help companies change their Wikipedia entries. Today, one of those firms received a cease and desist letter from the law firm representing the Wikimedia Foundation.
Back to the headline, what we usually find when we start digging is that the post is accurate. With that, we recommend that clients fix the problem, and the entry will often follow.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tagged: corporate representatives for ethical wikipedia engagement, crewe, wikipedia, wikipedia editing | Leave a comment »
Posted on November 19, 2013 by Josh Morgan
It’s not how much you write, it’s how well you write it. With 272 words, Abraham Lincoln grieved, inspired and set a bar still standing high above after 150 words.
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived, and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives, that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate, we can not consecrate – we can not hallow – this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.
It is for us, the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here, have, thus far, so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us – that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion – that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain – that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tagged: gettysburgaddress, great writing | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 15, 2013 by Josh Morgan
One of the hardest things for many startups is describing what they do and the value they provide in a way that is easily understood.
A Sacbee.com profile of local company ShoppingScout.com showed that they nailed it:
“When Kenneth Ouimet sets out to explain the purpose of ShoppingScout.com, his explanation is so simple: It will help people save time, save money and live better by telling them exactly where they can find the lowest prices on groceries they want to buy.”
Well done ShoppingScout team, well done.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tagged: elevator pitch, marketing, messaging, public relations, sacramento, shoppingscout, startups | Leave a comment »