Just a Thought
"Not planning for crises is the same thing as planning to have a crisis."
- Jonathan Bernstein
From the Editor
This week, Europe's top court ordered Google (and, by extension, other search engines) to acquiesce to demands from individuals to remove information deemed outdated. The case that sparked this originated with one man's desire to have reporting on an unfavorable legal case from his past scrubbed from search results, claiming, "the right to be forgotten".
My knee-jerk reaction was to see only the bad. After all, what this means is that anyone who has gained a negative online reputation could potentially be able to erase their bad name from the 'net, and my fear is that those who value making a buck over ethics will have a field day, working the law to have evidence of past misdoings removed and then going right back to old tricks.
Thinking a bit more on the issue, however, I see this ruling truly is a double-edged sword. If you make a mistake, amend it, and prove your desire to be a contributing member of society, should it continue to hamstring your progress through life a decade later? I don't believe so.
Even further, in my line of work, I regularly encounter individuals whose careers and personal lives are plagued by the continued presence of old news articles or police blotter reports, even though the information contained within was never accurate to begin with. Is that fair to them? I believe the answer to be no.
Unfortunately, the court's ruling is extremely ambiguous regarding what must be removed, and leaves it up to the search engines to decide whether the information in question deems removal. This raises yet another question - how much manpower will Google be required to devote to what sounds like it's likely to become an extremely time-consuming and expensive process of requests, appeals, and, if agreements can't be reached, days in court?
I'm very much interested in hearing what our readers, both in the U.S. and abroad, think about this decision and its potential consequences, both good and bad. Tag me (@nomorecrisis) in your tweets or drop us an email and join in the conversation!
Thank you, and read on.
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Here's a look at some of the most popular posts from the past weeks:
Erik Bernstein's 5 Steps to Monitoring Your Online Reputation will have you keeping tabs on that all-important asset in no time.
Been putting off that reputation management plan? There's no better time to start than now! Improve Your Online Reputation this Summer with the tips from this helpful infographic.
Talk About Easily Preventable...a social media crisis management #fail from British Gas shows just how important it is to ask, "What could go wrong here?"
Applying a concept of psychology to coping with online issues, Who Knew Maslow Was a Social Media Crisis Management Expert? looks at preventing social media mishaps in a scientific manner.
As his smartphone camera rolled, a horrified airline passenger watched their valuable bags being hurled some 20 feet through the air below his window seat. Air Canada Baggage Handlers Caught Tossing Luggage details the incident, as well as the airline's rapid response.
Nobody enjoys paying taxes, including, apparently, quite a few Internal Revenue Service employees. In another mark upon an already blighted reputation, the IRS Learns Hypocrisy Hurts Crisis Management after handing out bonuses to 1,000+ employees who owed back taxes.
Crisis Management Quotables...on Slinging Mud explains why it doesn't help your reputation to bash others, and how it can actually work against your goals.
If you had any doubt about whether Social Media Makes a Powerful Crisis Management Tool, take a quick look at the figures in this infographic.
If you're going to test emergency messaging on live servers, make very, VERY certain that stakeholders know it's a test. Twitter Crisis Management Test #Fail Embarrasses CT DOT investigates an incident where this failed to happen and the reputation issues that came as a result.
Erik Bernstein is a freelance writer, editor of Crisis Manager, Social Media Manager for Bernstein Crisis Management, and consultant/trainer at Bernstein Social Media.
|Apropos of Nothing|
Social Media Training
Want to get your feet wet with social media but don't know where to start? Maybe you have accounts, but aren't sure what to post, or how to reply?
Being active on social media is a must these days, but you have to do it right. Erik Bernstein, Bernstein Crisis Management's Social Media Manager, now offers social media training sessions in person or via Skype for groups and individuals.
For questions or pricing info, please email email@example.com
Bernsteins Available to Deliver Free Guest Lectures, Q&A Sessions
Jonathan alone, or the team of Jonathan and Erik Bernstein, are available at no charge to deliver guest lectures and host Q&A sessions with college classes via Skype or Google Hangout. Our latest presentation was to Karen Freberg's social media class at the University of Louisville, shout out to any readers from the #Freberg14 crew!
The lectures are fun for us and students, and we're more than happy to allow recording for your future use. All you need at your end is a single computer with webcam and a strong broadband connection for us to appear in your classroom in real-time.
Contact us for more info!
Attention Corporate Boards of Directors (and those who serve them).
If you're connected with a corporate board of directors in some way and think that board would benefit from having a veteran crisis management pro amongst its membership, please contact me. -- Jonathan
(aka blatant self-promotion)
Are your employees putting your company at risk?
Most people don't recognize a well-crafted online phishing scam when they see one, and that's exactly what cybercriminals count on.
With more than 500 million phishing emails being sent every day, and the increasing use of uncontrolled environments for accessing and sharing sensitive data, the need for proactive training has never been greater.
You can help your organization fight back by changing the way security training is done. Here's our process:
- Assess: Even before training begins, a simulated attack is launched on your employees. This not only helps you to assess current vulnerabilities, it also helps motivate employees to learn because they immediately realize how susceptible they are to an attack.
- Train: Our tactile approach to learning is proven to reduce employee vulnerability. Each 10-minute interactive and game-based module presents realistic examples and practice to engage your employees, improve their cyber security knowledge, reinforce learning, and measurably change their behavior.
- Measure: Data collected during training enables you to measure and report on the progress of your employees' learning. You'll know which employees are strong, and which are weaker in their cyber security knowledge - not just whether they completed the online training.
Don't let your employees fall for phishing scams hook, line, and sinker. Teach them how to recognize and avoid today's most advanced attacks before it's too late.
Learn more! Our always-available, cloud-based training content is available in 7 languages. For pricing and demonstration information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Expanded Crisis Manager Bookstore
We've recently expanded the Crisis Manager Bookstore to include offerings from esteemed colleagues like Melissa Agnes, Gerald Baron, Chris Syme and Jim Lukaszewski that cover topics from crisis communication and traditional PR to social media and cutting-edge crisis management. We'll be adding other authors we admire in the weeks ahead.
Visit the new Crisis Manager Bookstore to see all of the material available now!
Keeping the Wolves at Bay: Media Training
Learn how to deal with traditional or social media during a crisis in this educational and entertaining guide from Crisis Manager publisher Jonathan Bernstein. $25 for the hard copy and $10 for the PDF.
Head to the Crisis Manager Bookstore for more information and/or to purchase.
Manager's Guide to Crisis Management
Whether you're a seasoned manager, aspiring up-and-comer, or student of crisis management, Jonathan Bernstein's textbook, Manager's Guide to Crisis Management (McGraw-Hill, 2011) will put you in control of any situation.
Looking for a Turn-Key Social Media Solution?
Missing out on all the promotional, SEO and reputation management advantages of being active on social media platforms? Hire someone to be your voice...like Erik Bernstein, editor of Crisis Manager. He's the one largely responsible for keeping the Bernstein Crisis Management website and social media accounts highly ranked and popular and can do the same for you, while creating a set of valuable social presences that can be turned over to your full control at any time
Guest authors are very welcome to submit material for "Crisis Manager." There is no fee paid, but most guest authors have reported receiving business inquiries as a result of appearing in this publication. Case histories, experience-based lessons, commentary on current news events and editorial opinion are all eligible for consideration. Submission is not a guarantee of acceptance.
Jonathan Bernstein is both publisher of Crisis Manager and president of Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc., a national crisis management public relations agency providing 24/7 access to crisis response professionals. The agency engages in the full spectrum of crisis management services: crisis prevention, response, planning & training. He has been in the public relations field since 1982, following five-year stints in both military intelligence and investigative reporting.
Write to Jonathan at: email@example.com
Erik Bernstein is editor of Crisis Manager and is also Social Media Manager for Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc.
Write to Erik at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Legal Disclaimer (aka the small print)
All information contained herein is obtained by Jonathan Bernstein from sources believed by Jonathan Bernstein to be accurate and reliable.
Because of the possibility of human and mechanical error as well as other factors, neither Jonathan Bernstein nor Bernstein Crisis Management is responsible for any errors or omissions. All information is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Bernstein Crisis Management and Jonathan Bernstein make no representations and disclaim all express, implied, and statutory warranties of any kind to the user and/or any third party including, without limitation, warranties as to accuracy, timeliness, completeness, merchantability, or fitness for any particular purpose.
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A service of this newsletter is to provide news summaries and/or snippets to readers. In such instances articles and/or snippets will be reprinted as they are received from the originating party or as they are displayed on the originating website or in the original article. As we do not write the news, we merely point readers to it, under no circumstance shall Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein be liable to the user and/or any third party for any lost profits or lost opportunity, indirect, special, consequential, incidental, or punitive damages whatsoever due to the distribution of said news articles or snippets that lead readers to a full article on a news service's website, even if Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein has been advised of the possibility of such damages. Authors of the original news story and their publications shall be exclusively held liable. Any corrections to news stories are not mandatory and shall be printed at the discretion of the list moderator after evaluation on a case-by-case basis.