Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Google In Your Backyard: Has the internet gone far beyond mainstream advertising and invasion of privacy?

From internet cookies to your backyard, what next? Spying in your bathroom?

According to a recent Wall Street Journal investigation, see article by Jessica E. Vascellaro of The Wall Street Journal “Google Agonizes on Privacy As Ad World Vaults Ahead” (Tuesday, August 10, 2010, A1, or see video) Google senior executives are reviewing their confidential “vision statement” assessing how far they should go in monetizing from it’s massive database, which tracks all forms of internet usage patterns from what video you upload on YouTube, your Gmail messages and your physical home address, to your checkout transactions and what websites you visit.  All this enables Google to customize the ads you see, a term they call intraspace advertising. 

So as you search the web using Google for information, let's say about cars, Google will inundate you with automobile ads which is turning your internet service experience, that you pay for with your own money, for your own personal Web search use, into a plethora of target marketing gimmicks, not only annoying for consumers but essentially invading privacy.  This type of internet advertising self dealing has been going on for some time now, but is becoming more rampant as new technologies are added coupled with the use of thousands of third-party businesses.  Obviously, in the long run,  this is going to do more harm than good.

Statistics from comScore indicate that in the month of June Google had the highest internet usage of all the global web companies with 75% of global Internet users (943.8 million). Included in Google’s vision statement was the admission that while some of their uses of databases are safe, some are “NOT” safe.

Doesn't Google's data-trading marketplace and use of users' personal information from various sources equate to essentially exploiting individuals without their permission? Is the public going to allow Google to essentially cyber-stalk for the sake of target advertising?

Have Google’s aggressions gone far beyond “mainstream advertising” to virtually snooping in backyards? Are Government Officials and Google abusing their power and illegally spying on the U.S. population?

According to Aaron Dyles  of (8/2/2010), local government officials in Riverhead, N.Y. are using Google’s satellite technology to snoop in residents backyards and issue fines to those that have pools without permits. All this without the legal protocol of acquiring a search warrant! Is this a violation of our constitutional rights? From internet cookies to your backyard, what next?  Spying in your bathroom?

Please answer this LinkedIn poll. Should something be done to prevent Google and other internet companies from invading consumer privacy on the Web?

by Gloria Buono Daly
Founder of

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Deal with It: Communicating in a Crisis - How to Navitate the Chaos and Triumph

Deal with It: Communicating in a Crisis - “How to Navigate the Chaos and Triumph”
written by Gloria Buono Daly, as appeared on on May 8, 2009

On May 5th, NYWICI members and guests gathered at Burson-Marsteller NY for a panel on how to master crisis management in politics, government, business and non-profit organizations. Panelists addressed the gaps, critical challenges and successes in crisis communications.

The event was moderated by Courtney Hazlett, columnist and celebrity correspondent, MSNBC. The panelists included Cindy Leggett-Flynn, partner, Brunswick Group LLC; Davia Temin, president, Temin & Company; Loretta Ucelli, senior advisor, Gutenberg Communications; and Gail Cohen, Global Chair of Healthcare Practice, Burson-Marsteller NY.

Hazlett started by quoting then Senator John F. Kennedy: “The medium, television, which lends itself to manipulation, exploitation and gimmicks, can be abused by demagogues but appealed to emotion, and prejudice, and ignorance.” She then picked up the threat and addressed the panel: “That was when we only had TV to deal with; now that we got Twitter, the internet, and cable news 24 hours a day, speed is everything! When do you decide to jump on something, and when do you decide to pull back and see what the story is going to be?”


Most communications’ crises stem from a gap between what an organization perceives as a problem and what the public thinks is the problem. Ucelli believed that in those cases, speed is everything; crisis managers must be ready to communicate when necessary and be aware of what is going on around them.


Social media are vital in identifying a developing crisis and have broadened crisis communications. Leggett-Flynn believes that many companies don’t have the tools to take necessary steps, however. Cohen added that there are more voices today than a decade or two ago and that now, “monitoring is bread and butter.”


Twitter users are mostly in their 30s and 40s, while CEOs and company heads are usually older. Temin sees a lot of confusion among managers on the reality of blogs and tweets, given that many celebrities often hire people to tweet for them. “Tweets may be here today — and tweeted away tomorrow.”


Communicators face challenges when putting aside personal feelings about a particular corporation, when asked to restore their company’s or client’s reputation. Leggett-Flynn believes that many communicators function as legal representatives. “In media, you’re either evil or a hero; gray areas don’t play well.”


While one of the main elements in crisis management is developing the facts and putting them out fast, Ucelli stressed communicators must know how to end the sentence quickly in almost any crisis situation. Temin shared an experience, where a communications manager and former journalist kept on answering questions when the right strategy would have been to simply say it once and leave it at that.


After Nickelodeon’s failure to address the domestic abuse charges against Chris Brown, many parents wanted to know why the station hadn’t disqualified the singer from its Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards. “If Nickelodeon had participated in a public conversation rather than simply wait for Brown to pull out, that would have helped [its] reputation,” explained Cohen.


On the failing auto industry, Bernard Madoff, Bear Sterns, AIG and Rod Blagojevich, the consensus was that the car makers committed the biggest blunders in their crisis communications. Ucelli believes the situation had been in their control but management had missed the target for years. “The inability to produce a car that Americans would be driving and the big public relations incident on Capital Hill, didn’t work,” Ucelli concluded. “It’s so ubiquitous, so silent, nothing online,” added Cohen. And Leggett-Flynn believed that there was disconnect from reality — which, by the way, goes for most of those on the list.

written by Gloria Buono Daly

as appeared on on May 8, 2009