The Number of U.S. Bloggers

Goldman & Associates Blog

The Number of U.S. Bloggers

BloggerBlogging is a curious activity. People are regularly writing on an Internet site about something they have an interest in hoping others will read it or find it engaging. That got us wondering how many bloggers there are in the United States. Doing a Google search, you can actually find statistics about the number of bloggers now and how many there will be in 2020. According to Statista, The Statistics Portal, there were 27.4 million bloggers in 2014. Today, there are likely 30.6 million bloggers; and by 2020, it is expected there will be 31.7 million bloggers. As a regular blogger, we find it surprising that there are so many of us sitting down and writing. It takes a major time commitment for a questionable outcome, but like millions of others here we are today blogging.

Americans and Video Games

Video game devicePew Research Center just released 5 research facts about Americans and video games. One point is clear, we really like our video games, so much so that 43% of all adults often or sometimes play video games. When it comes to devices we use to play the video games it doesn’t matter, computers, TV or mobile, we use them all. Men are more likely than women to play and younger men are more likely than older men to play them. There are gender differences in the types of games we play, but these differences are not extreme. Clearly, video games will demand more of our discretionary dollars and time as we move away from other forms of entertainment. Read here the 5 research facts.

Social Media Apps for Natural Disasters

pexels-cell photo-607812 (4)Social media apps are changing the ways natural disaster help and information are accessed. This story by to-help-you-get-through-the-hurricane”>NPR looked at 17 apps that could be beneficial in a natural disaster. More non-profit organizations and individuals are relying on these and other apps to formulate rescues, save lives, get people around dangerous roadways, find fuel and locate shelter. Not mentioned in the story are traditional apps such as WAZE, Weather Alerts, Google Maps and Facebook that also offer real-time information through crowd sourced data and other data services. There is a downside if Internet access and cell towers are destroyed. However, companies and organizations are examining new access options from drones to high altitude balloons to address these issues. With each new disaster, more social media apps are being developed to aid rescues and provide immediate helpful information. The process of natural disaster communication is becoming more and more dependent on smartphones and downloading apps before the event.

Cookie Legal Battle or PR Tactic

CookieA story in Gizmodo has us wondering whether a cookie fight is actually a legal battle or a PR tactic in a larger public relations campaign. After reading the story here, let us know what you think. Oreo and Hydrox have been making similar cookies for over a hundred years. The story is a bit complicated, but explained well by Gizmodo. In essence, Hydrox has accused Oreo of hiding their cookies on the shelves of grocery stores behind other products so consumers only see the Oreo brand. Hydrox has taken to social media to get photos of this Oreo activity. Using the social media content, Hydrox has gone to the Federal Trade Commission to seek a remedy. Hydrox fans are concerned that Oreo’s actions will lead to the demise of Hydrox, and they might have a point. However, it seems this cookie battle is getting a good deal of media coverage. News coverage and the social media activities of Hydrox can only help make people more aware of their cookie. This may be a chicken or egg question, but surely the visibility from this fight only helps Hydrox’s sales. That’s why were wondering if this is a PR tactic.

Why Many Young Women Post Selfies

SelfiePsychology Today has a blog posting by Renee Engeln Ph.D. that looks at what research shows about the psychology of posting selfies. There is a term she identifies, “impression management” that provides an understanding of the mental process young women use… and it is mostly young women who post selfies … to engaged in this modern social media activity. As the term implies, young women are attempting to control what others think of them through their postings. Dr. Engeln explains that there is a correlation between young women’s use of social media and psychological problems about self-worth and depression, but that it is not a causal relationship. However, recent research does point to selfie posting as showing signs of a causal relationship. Interviews with women after posting selfies shows that they feel less confident than before they posted. The Goldman Blog is not sure what this means for social media in the long run, but research is beginning to show the degree to which it might not be good for people.

Facebook Users Fast Changing Relationship

Facebook cSomething is happening with Facebook users and their relationship to the social medium. Cambridge Analytica revelations about how data collected by Facebook was used has many Americans unsettled and changing the way they engage with Facebook. Today, in time for new Senate hearings on Facebook and other social media sites, Pew Research Center released data on this changed relationship. In the last year, about 40% of all users have taken a break of several weeks or more and about a quarter of all users have deleted the Facebook app from their phone. More than half have adjusted their privacy settings. Those most likely to have made these changes are younger users. This has been a swift change for a social medium that has taken the world by storm and grew at an astronomical rate.

Senior Living Prepares for Storm Assaults

HurricaneHurricane season last year challenged the senior living industry with numerous evacuations and brought damage to many senior living communities in major metropolitan areas. Huge hurricanes created damaging winds, tornadoes and storm surge. Texas and Florida, major senior living areas, saw devastation at unprecedented levels. So far, this year’s hurricane season has been fairly quiet. But according to Weather.com trouble is on the horizon. Tomorrow Hurricane Gordon is expected to make landfall on the Gulf Coast. Named storm Florence might be aiming for the mid-Atlantic area of the East Coast. Behind Florence are two more potential tropical storms forming off the coast of Africa. The senior living industry needs to be wary of, and ready for, any new storm assaults. Goldman & Associates is prepared to help with its SL Crisis Mitigation practice.

Robots Writing News v. Journalists Writing

RobotOur headline is a little misleading. It’s not robots writing news that is taking place, but software algorithms that are being used to write news, also known as automated content. The College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida did research on perceptions people have of news written by a robot as compared to a journalist. When they are told the news they read was written by a robot, they find it less credible than news written by a journalist. The study concludes that people don’t trust robots to write news as much as they trust humans. However, it is people who programmed the software that wrote the robot’s news.

Addressing Trust Problem After A Crisis

TrustYour organization has weathered the immediate impact of a crisis. Your crisis communications plan worked and everyone is ready to move on. The reality is the long term need to address the crisis isn’t over because now you have been left with a trust problem. Each crisis an organization has dips into the reservoir of trust that has been built over its history. That trust pool is limited and difficult to replace requiring a concerted effort to refill it. And if the same crisis happens again, the trust problem grows exponentially while the trust pool evaporates. Constituents who saw your initial problem as an explainable mistake will lose their resolve and belief in your abilities to address the problem if it happens again. Chipolte (food borne illness) and the Catholic Church (priest pedophilia) have seen their problems resurface and their pool of trust diminish. Simply stated, these trust problems require comprehensive institutional change and extensive, consistent and concentrated public relations strategies to repair them. Always understand, the public relations work is never done following a crisis.

Papa John’s Remains Mired in PR Crisis

PapaJohn'sWhat a mess. Papa John’s founder and former chairman of the board, John Schnatter, is trying to regain his chairmanship after resigning last month. Schnatter has been controversial. Last year he got into trouble over his comments about NFL protests and then he resigned from the chairmanship last month after admitting to using a racial epithet. Pizza sales and the company stock have been negatively impacted by his behavior. The Goldman Blog covered the story here and at the time noted it would likely get worse. Now the PR crisis has grows as both the company and Schnatter wage a very public PR battle for control. The company is running television commercials acknowledging its problems, as explained in this article on CNN. At the same time, Schnatter is running his own ads trying to explain why he should be brought back to run the company. This Washington Post story describes the PR campaign being undertaken by Schnatter. The reality is this PR crisis needs to be resolved soon, or Schnatter will end up destroying the company he created.