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Banning social media at work

A new poll from Ragan Communications says that 30% or so of PR departments block access to social media sites at the office.  (Read it here.)

How very 1950’s!  Gee, Biff … make sure the employees aren’t making too many personal calls.

My personal take:

  • If you’re worried about goofing off, it’s not caused by Facebook:  There will always be a way to goof off.
  • If you’re worried about company secrets leaking out:  Everyone already has a phone, email, IM, etc. If someone is going to leak, they will leak.
  • If you expect people to work for you after hours, they need to replace it with personal stuff during work hours.

Most important: 

  • You can not be a competent PR executive any more without a deep familiarity with everything social media.  Media coverage is now driven by social media, not press releases. 
  • The only way your staff can be competent in these tools is to play with them. A lot.
  • Clients will flee when they discover how ignorant your team is.

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  1. Christian January 15, 2008 at 2:48 pm #

    I heard one of the funniest stories related to banning websites from work. One of my friend’s is on the client side at a CPG firm in Canada, where they banned YouTube and Facebook.
    So when they started to employ social media and viral strategies, they couldn’t view the content from their offices! They had to get IT to lift the ban temporarily so they could view their own work!

  2. Anne Pauker Kreitzberg January 15, 2008 at 4:45 pm #

    Well, let’s face it, social computing is all about building relationships among people – not exactly the strong suit for most corporations. Is it no wonder the fear factor has set in?
    Speaking of Facebook, in my opinion, the Facebook-ABC debates let the proverbial genie out of the bottle. You may want to check out my latest blog article, “Hillary Isn’t the Only One to Find Her Voice.” (

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