The Curator’s News Feed: March 2, 2012

This week, we're reading about how grass roots social media tactics are affecting the GOP race, a couple Apple product tidbits and a perfect weekend recipe to cap off a busy week.

Talking Texting, CNN. Nearly every consumer article you read today dives into the negative effects of technology: how common social skills of today’s Millennial generation are dying, or how we’re becoming less intelligent by the minute because of all of the gadgets we have at our fingertips to do the thinking for us. I think the jury is still out on whether this is true or not, but it does call into question whether technology is hindering us or if it is simply the evolution of communication. For example, CNN poses the question if a text message to your high school sweetheart is the 2012 version of a love letter? Just in the way Shakespearean-style dialect and even the use of cursive writing has died, maybe so has too died the use of appropriate grammar, written letters and face-to-face communication? If that’s the case, what’s the next step in our communication evolution, and it will it be for better or for worse? As communicators, I hope we can take a more proactive role in how we shape this for the future.  - Annie

Dior launches online magazine, Washington Post Style Blog. In an effort to keep up with the multitude of fashion houses that are embracing social and interactive media by publishing their own online magazines, Dior launched their own magazine this last week, aptly titled Dior Mag. What is intriguing about this is that social media played a large part in the downfall of the brand’s reputation when a video of the director, John Galliano, spouting anti-Semitic insults went viral. The fact that Dior is working to harness the medium which helped publicize its famed designer’s offenses shows the true power of social media – you can’t hide behind your brand’s once stellar reputation and hope that it carries enough weight to wipe consumer’s minds of previous poor behavior. This article talks about how adapting to the changing social media environment might help Dior recover their once glossy and elegant image. - Megan

Tourism Richmond’s dream gig: New food blogger job pays $50,000/year, Vancouver Sun. Richmond, BC, a massive multicultural suburb of Vancouver, is an Asian food paradise. Local food fiends have been known to make the two-hour drive up from Seattle just to restaurant-hop all day, gorging on everything from xiao long bao to pork belly banh mi. Now Tourism Richmond wants to pay one blogger to do just that. The winning contestant in their just-launched contest will be given $50,000, an apartment, living compensation and a daily stipend to eat in a different Richmond restaurant every day for a year, while blogging, tweeting and promoting the city on social media. It’s like the Festival Blogger Correspondent contest we just ran for our client Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo, though on a bit bigger scale. Richmond’s contest has already resulted in a splash of publicity, and I’m sure the rabid food blogger scene in Vancouver will produce an incredible lineup of contestants. Though this sounds amazing in theory, I’m not sure I could personally dine out at a different restaurant every day for 365 days straight – sometimes you just need a home-cooked meal. - Lisa

Even Better Than iPhone 5: An iPhone With The 1986 Mac OS, Co.Design. Imagine your iPhone if we never veered from Steve Jobs’s classic Mac OS from 1986, we just constantly updated it. We’d have this clever design called “iOS 86.” Kind of takes you back, doesn’t it? – Julia

How Grass-roots Social Media are Extending the GOP Race, CNN. Visit the Curator homepage and you’ll see the phrase, “Nothing is as dangerous in communication as assuming you own the message.” Savvy brands have this figured this out, but in the political arena, the majority of candidates seem unaware of this new reality. I am obsessed with politics and fired up for the months ahead. One of the things I love to watch is the impact of both traditional and social media on the political process. This CNN commentary points to social media as a key factor in helping grass-roots activists build coalitions, strengthen their ranks and continue the current GOP race much longer than previous years.  – Ann Marie

What PR pros need to know about Facebook Timeline for brands, PR Daily. Saw this on PR Daily today and it’s worth a read. - Dan

Chicken Skewers with Meyer Lemon Salsa, Epicurious. This has been a wonderfully intense week at Curator as we’ve rolled out a new campaign we’re extremely excited about, are three weeks out from our Food & Wine Festival in Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo and are just a couple weeks away from launching Whole Foods’ new store in Lynnwood, WA. My favorite way to unwind is to turn up the music, pour some wine and cook with my wife. This is the recipe I’ve found for Saturday night. Looks light, flavorful and easy. I’ve had enough hard this week!  - Scott

Only Apple can be this ambiguous and still pack the house, psfk: The rumor mill is churning as Apple prepares to (maybe) debut the iPad 3. Earlier this week, Apple sent out invitations for a March 7, press event in San Francisco. What are they announcing? They didn’t say, but they did say "We have something you really have to see. And touch." Assuming they don’t want to see a repeat of the Beatle debacle, (and taking into account their pattern of annual hardware updates) the iPad 3 will likely be the object of the mysterious unveiling. The most interesting thing about this kind of cryptic announcement, to me anyway, is that only Apple is able to really pull it off on this scale. No one knows for sure what will be revealed, but you can bet it will be a packed house at the event and that every news outlet will be talking about it. That’s brand equity that can’t be bought with all the ad dollars in the world. - Matthew