My Space

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My Space

Post by Guest on Tue Sep 23, 2008 6:28 pm

There's a Rumford, Maine page listed on My Space, run by TRR. The leading blurb uses a broad-based "WE as a community...." to denigrate The Sun Journal and "The Sun Journal Jr." It also says to visit The Rumford Reporter for the real story of what is happening in town.
I know this is a misrepresentation of Rumford. I'm wondering if it's legal for her to imply that she's the official voice for the town of Rumford.

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Re: My Space

Post by xmashen on Tue Sep 23, 2008 6:34 pm

Let's not jump to conclusions. It could be the Papal "we" , or the pregnant " we" , or the simply self-delusional " we" . WE should wait and see.

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Re: My Space

Post by KevinNSaisi on Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:22 pm

Why is it so important? It is one person's opinion.
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Re: My Space

Post by Guest on Wed Sep 24, 2008 5:10 am

"Why is is so important?" Well, the blurb says "We as a community...." feel such and such. I am a part of the community and I don't feel that way, and I'm sure many others in the community don't feel the way TRR members do either. The statement implies that they are sanctioned to speak for the citizens of Rumford, and as far as I know, they are not. The statement also says that if viewers want the real truth of what's happening in Rumford to visit The Rumford Reporter site. Enough said?

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Re: My Space

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:06 am

It is on an non-attributed blog with no connection to any governmental or community agency. It is just words, and most people would see it that way. If such statements were on the town web site or the growth council web site, I would be more concerned. Look at some of the things the radical factions say about national politics. The political parties (yes, I am calling them radical) attempt to represent themselves as the voice of the community all of the time. That doesn't mean that they actually represent all of us.
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Re: My Space

Post by Timeout on Wed Sep 24, 2008 8:56 am

I think Kevin has a good point...TRR is using a marketing device or advertisement to boost their product. Example - "You can ski Sunday River but real skiers know the real skiing is at Black Mountain" (okay - it's just an example...). The basic rules of consumerism could be applied here: caveat emptor or buyer beware. I don't take anyone saying they are the voice for the community seriously. I do think that one voice can tip a community if we give it power. Malcolm Gladwell has an excellent marketing book called "The Tipping Point". He explains how by reaching the key opinion drivers in a market, the market can be tipped in a particular direction. I'm sure TRR staff and others are well-versed in marketing...not that marketing is a bad thing...
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Re: My Space

Post by Timeout on Wed Sep 24, 2008 9:48 am

For anyone interested in marketing...

Suppose, for the purpose of discussion, that we view TRR's behavior as marketing strategy. If we think of it this way, we can then examine where TRR's strategy falls in an ethical/legal framework.

There is a distinction between legality and ethicality of marketing decisions. Picture a box with 4 quadrants, one side labeled Ethicality and the other Legality. Ethics deals with personal moral principles and values, while laws are society's values and standards that are enforceable in the courts. This distinction can lead to the rationalization that if a behavior is within reasonable ethical and legal limits, then it is not really illegal or unethical.

The box I've described has four slots: ethical but illegal, ethical and legal, unethical and illegal, unethical but legal. Try taking something TRR has done and put it into one quadrant of this box. It helps me to understand where my perception of "wrongness" is coming from. It also helps in developing a strategy to deal with the wrongness if necessary.
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Re: My Space

Post by xmashen on Wed Sep 24, 2008 7:41 pm

Timeout, let me say that, in reading your post, I was whisked away back in time to a long-ago physics class that actually brought me to tears because of my inability to comprehend the concepts being taught that day. But at the same time, i realized that this was in fact true knowledge and that maybe someday I'd hopefully get it. I think i DO now. I would gladly sit in your class anytime!

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Re: My Space

Post by C on Fri Sep 26, 2008 9:05 pm

TRR is "marketing" themselves into a very niche corner (think Ambercrombie) using tactics that cross ethical boundaries important to the majority of people who aren't patrons. Ambercrombie's current advertising is provocative and controversial while TRR's is petty, often malicious and controversial. This negative attention could be detrimental to reputations that were hard earned by those who came before them.

I believe the reputation of dissent and half truths that TRR is cultivating (even though they try to water it down with religion and mundane events) doesn't make sense from a marketing standpoint, for them or for the community they profess to be dedicated to. Perhaps this is just a passing fancy for them and credibility doesn't factor into their equation. To TRR's credit- they've promoted in us, a gathering of intelligent people who are willing to debate issues, share ideas in a (mostly) adult manner and who don't take well to others being bullied.
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Re: My Space

Post by Timeout on Fri Sep 26, 2008 9:55 pm

I do think that "word of mouth" as an information source is a very powerful marketing tool because it typically involves friends viewed as trustworthy. Advice from friends rates as a much higher buying influence over advertising. Many organizations use positive word of mouth to promote a product or service.

Not all word of mouth information is positive; negative word of mouth, even if none of it is based on fact, is quite common. Overcoming or neutralizing negative word of mouth is difficult and costly. We can all think of town situations that lately have proved to be untrue. Perception of wrongdoing will still linger even when proven otherwise..."Isn't he the guy that...." (fill in your own blank), or, "I heard that department - blah, blah, blah..." Think of how much time and money we've wasted in the last year trying to defend unfounded accusations. Perhaps more than we saved in budget cuts (certainly more than we will save in long-term effects). Negative word of mouth is disruptive and expensive. Kind of like gossip. Unfortunately there is always some element of truth, no matter how great or small the element. We are not perfect people.

Rumford can find a common ground to stand on. This winter's coming cold will provide some of that common ground. It is heartening to see various groups working together to address the coming difficulties that our community will face. I see and talk to many people who are preparing and helping each other out. Rumford's greatest strength is her ability to be there for her people in a crisis. I've witnessed this over and over in the years that I've lived here. Interestingly, this ability to help people out comes from word of mouth as well. Same networking skill, different outcome.
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Re: My Space

Post by Guest on Sun Sep 28, 2008 5:47 am

Nice to see that the blurb on the Rumford MySpace has changed.

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Re: My Space

Post by T on Sun Sep 28, 2008 10:39 am

Perhaps someone in town government placed some well deserved pressure and forced a change?

From the Rumford MySpace page:

About me:

This is not an "official" Town of Rumford municipal government website. This
is a website dedicated to all the positive attributes of our beautiful
town. Welcome and we hope that you see Rumford the way we see Rumford
after you check out the site. This website by no means represents the
perspective of all of the members of the Rumford community.

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Re: My Space

Post by Chuck on Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:33 am

Whether they did it themselves or were aked to by town officials, I'm glad they changed it. It's the first time I've seen them fix something that should be fixed.
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