Cancer is a bitch

It has happened again. Someone close to our family has been diagnosed with cancer. A serious case.

Cancer is a bitch. It strikes the undeserving. It shows no quarter to young or old, good or bad. It is devastating not only to the stricken, but to all those who know and love that person.

Cancer can be beat. It takes all of the science available to our healthcare professionals. But it takes more. It takes hope and determination and belief.

I know that our friend is not the only person who will receive news like this. It’s always devastating. But especially at this time of year.

So to you, my friend, and all the people who receive news that fills us with doubt and fear, I can only say that my thoughts, my will, my prayers, my heart are with you.

If there is a power above, some logic and order that make sense of this, I hope it will show itself now.

Cancer is a bitch.

The final episode of Inside PR – at least for 2012

Gini DietrichIt’s the end, at least for this year. The final episode of Inside PR for 2012 has been posted.

Martin-Waxman-20112-293x300In today’s episode, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman, I look back at the trends in 2012 that stood out for us. Things like the continuing evolution of social media to photos and video; the convergence of advertising, PR, digital agencies to compete directly against one another; the evolution of search to incorporate personal profiles and social interaction. And above all, for me, the stripping away of my idealism about the blogosphere that came when I read Ryan Holiday‘s “Trust Me, I’m Lying.”

Have a listen. Let us know what you think. In a comment on this blog, on the Inside PR blog, on the Inside PR Google+ Community or on the Inside PR Facebook group. Anyway that you want. We’d love to hear your views.

We’ll be back in 2013 as Inside PR begins its seventh year.

Have a safe and happy holiday season.

Laurier LaPierre, legendary Canadian broadcaster, has left us

Laurier LaPierreSad news today: Laurier LaPierre, Canadian broadcast icon and former Canadian Senator, has passed away.

I met Laurier when we worked together on Sheila Copps‘ unsuccessful campaign for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada. Laurier may have been fighting for a lost cause, but he did it with enthusiasm, generosity and the highest principles.

It was an honour to have known him. And a true delight to have spent time with him.


For a perspective on Laurier LaPierre’s contribution to journalism, read Cecil Rossner’s Grilling the Guest – Laurier LaPierre and the Host Seat Interview on the Canadian Journalism Project blog.

Inside PR: Google+ Communities, Twitter Photo filters and Facebook Democracy Fail

Inside PREpisode 3.19 of the Inside PR podcast has just been published. In this week’s episode, Gini Dietrich, Martin Waxman and I talk about a number of things that caught our eye.

First up: Google+ Communities

Google has added Communities to its Google+ Network. Think Yahoo Groups. Discussion groups organized around specific subjects.

Introducing the Inside PR Google+ Community

We’ve set up a Community for Inside PR listeners on Google+. If you like the podcast and would like to suggest future topics or discuss each week’s episode, click over to our Google+ Community and join the conversation.

Google+ Communities

Worth watching

Will the Inside PR Google+ community get as many members as the Inside PR Facebook group? Will there be better discussion on Google+? (I’m betting the conversation on Google+ will be much better, if not more voluminous.)

Twitter upgrades(?) with Filters on Photos

Is this a step forward? Or a defensive move in response to Instagram pulling its integration with Twitter? I’m not sure about the companies’ moves. I bet our listeners have more insight into this than I do.

Facebook drops its commitment to user democracy

Does anybody care? Was this ever a real thing or did Facebook’s thresholds so high that it simply fed a feeling of powerlessness from the outset?

Listen to the complete podcast

And tell us what you think

This week, I’m encouraging Inside PR listeners to join the Google+ Community and find out whether this will be an instant success, a slow build, or a complete fizzle.

Feeling lucky

This morning, I arrived to a darkened office. That’s not surprising, because it was 7 AM and I was the first person to arrive.

As I turned on the lights and walked into our then–empty office, I realized that I’m a lucky guy.

Why? Because 16 years after having co-founded Thornley Fallis, I still love my job.

Yes, there are challenges. There are disappointments. There is stress. But I know that I can rise to these challenges and be the master of my destiny. That’s invigorating.

And I love what I do. I love watching the changing patterns of communication and the evolving relationships we have with the institutions around us. I love learning from what I observe and changing the way that I apply my own skills for myself and for my clients.

I chose to be the first person in the office this morning because I wanted to get to work to tackle the day’s challenges, to stretch myself, to learn and to do something that I find meaningful.

So it’s 7 AM in a darkened office, and I feel I’m a lucky guy.