Extra Credit Kernels for Week 9

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March 3, 2014 by Kathryn Kuttis

photoI want to offer five points of extra credit to anyone who is willing to write an experimental blog post this week.

It’s easy to get comfortable with writing. What I like about blogging is that there aren’t too many rules and if I want too, I can be creative with my voice and my subject matter.

Keep in mind that sometimes experiments fail. Whatever your writing approach, remember your audience. If you go too far with language and punctuation, it could easily alienate your reader. You still want your post to be readable and to fit with the theme of your blog.

It is only a suggestion. Many of you have developed your blog voice quickly this term. As we near the end of the term, it seems appropriate to invite you to exercise your new voice with a bit of a challenge.

Here are my top five suggestions for your writing experiment:

1. Write from a non-human point of view. As if you were an animal, an Oscar statue, a plane ticket, etc.

2. Compose a response letter to one of the kernels. “Dear Forbes, in your article on…”

3. Alter the time setting as if you were in the past or the future. “Many years ago before we could talk with animals, I read a story about a dolphin…”

4. Write a response that provides a creative backstory.

5. Be one of the people quoted in the article and give your point of view on the issue.

Feel free to use one of these five suggestions or create your own. It could be your best blog of the term. Ideally, it will be the most fun for you and your readers.

American Airlines Explains the End of Bereavement Fares (PR Daily) How do you take something away from customers who are grieving? Could they have approached this announcement differently?

How Patagonia’s New CEO Is Increasing Profits While Trying to Save The World (Fast Company) How is this CEO able to combine investor interests with her own? What makes that good for business?

How A Jewelry Company is Making $250,000 Pieces Using 3D Printing and Google Earth (Forbes.com) Jewelers have long had the same messages for customers. How will this new technology change what they say and how they sell?

Dolphin Bite’s Childs Hand at SeaWorld (takepart.com) How not to respond when your captive-animal bites a customer. What is SeaWorld’s message? How are they surviving in the face of so much scrutiny?

Are Musicians Better Language Learners?(theguardian.com) How does this article rely on research and third party sources to provide evidence for its claims?

Oscars’ Gift Bag Has $80,000 Worth of Swag (CBSNews.com) You would think this might alienate the viewers who are still dealing with the impact of an epic economic recession. What keeps people watching the Oscars?

Community Radio Transformation A Step Closer (savennahnow.com) How will grassroots organizers change the face of radio? What do local audiences want to hear about?

The PR Problem With Public Relations Firms (Huffington Post) What should potential clients know before they hire a PR firm?

The Fear of Public Speaking (media-relations.com) What are your top five tips to deliver a great presentation?

How Google Glass is Building New Venues for Sports Sponsors (forbes.com) Here comes the future of sports.

Get ‘Appy With These Cool Travel Apps (CNBC) Do you think apps can make travel easier? What are your favorite technology travel tips?

Carnival Erupts as Brazilian Protests, World Cup Plans Continue (Reuters) Protesters spoiling your event? What’s a communication team to do?


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If you share an interest in public relations, media and visual design, this might be a good place for you to hang out. I started this blog to exchange ideas with my students at the University of Oregon. They keep me (and maybe you too) at the forefront of social media, visual communication and career development. Here you'll find our best ideas, links and learning as we write, create and blog our way through a course on Strategic PR Communication.

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