How much has the globalisation of news, and the speed of the news cycle fuelled the wild ride the share markets and the unnerving of investors? Those of us in public relations need to gauge this for our clients, particularly in Crisis PR.
It calls to mind the 2009 quote from a Rudd minder (when Rudd was PM) who stated: “There is not a media cycle anymore, there is a media cyclone.”
Below is how Nick Christensen in The Australian has reported it this morning – the compulsive need people have for immediate news. Apparently especially if it is bad. He quotes Nick Gray, “The audience really needs up-to-the-minute commentary and they’re just gobbling it up,”
On Spin Doctors last Thursday we discussed this globalisation, and the impact of a constant feed of negative news: today the London riots; last week, locally Madeleine Pulver’s awful experience; the week before something else (can you remember what?); and of course the endless negativity coming from the Gillard/Abbott stoush.
Ross Gittens is cynically informative on this in his piece ‘Sorry to be Sober but the World is not Ending’, quoting Nobel-prize winning economist Paul Samuelson , ”the stockmarket has predicted nine of the past five recessions”.
On 60 Minutes we used to judge, in periods of extended bad news such as recessions, that the audience was wanting some good news, and we’d scout around for a ‘positive’ or ‘warm’ story. With access to news now so pervasive, that opportunity for the audience to receive some relief is gone. The bad news is ubiquitous and continuous.
For public relations folks practising Crisis PR it means this: more than ever ensure that you are accurate before making statements, and ensure that your spokespeople can present calmly, no matter how aggressive the question.
The Australian: TURMOIL in the financial markets caused a major surge to business news websites as nervous investors sought up-to-the-minute news and analysis.
As the All Ordinaries fell on Monday, many leading business websites reported spikes in traffic of between 25 and 70 per cent.
“The audience really needs up-to-the-minute commentary and they’re just gobbling it up,”says Nick Gray, general manager and publisher of the Business Spectator website.
“Even if the markets do settle down, I imagine we are going into a period of uncertainty and the audience will come to us daily to get an updated view on what is likely to happen and why.”
On Monday, traffic to The Australian’s business sites rose 70 per cent to 118,548 visitors.
Fairfax Digital’s business sites rose 36 per cent to 311,488 visitors. Business Spectator rose 40 per cent to 21,547, while The Australian Financial Review, which has a pay wall, recorded a 25 per cent rise to 20,969, according to Nielsen Market Intelligence.More in The Australian