Periscope vs Meerkat – how things change in PR, social media and communication in just a week!

Five days ago I blogged about a potential “gamechanger” for public relations and media communication – mobile accessible livestreaming. At that stage in the technology journalism pages, it was all about a livestreaming app called Meerkat. This week it’s all about a livestreaming app called Periscope. In essence they are pretty similar in functionality. Here is a livestream tour of my office using Periscope uploaded to YouTube.

For anyone who watched last week’s efforts, you can see it’s pretty similar. There were no live viewers of my Periscope video as opposed to six for my Meerkat video last week.

The technology journalism hype around specific platforms and the speed with which apps are coming onto the market reinforces the point I made last week. By the time 2015 first year communication students graduate in 2018, who can predict what technology will be available? As educators, we need to focus education related to technology on principles rather than specific platforms.

For example, this article discusses the Positives and negatives about livestreaming (by @paul__armstrong (Twitter) in The Guardian), particularly raising the issue of copyright for app users. If you’re livestreaming the concert you’re watching are you breaching copyright? Probably. Are they likely to catch you at this stage. Probably not.

This article by @jacobpramuk (Twitter) examines What Meerkat, Periscope mean for sports broadcasts. It reports the views of a couple of academics. John Vrooman, a Vanderbilt University sports economist, was quoted as saying that competition is no real threat, for now at least. Manish Tripathi, an Emory University marketing professor, was quoted as saying that teams and leagues could use the fan generated content from these apps as opportunities to enhance their marketing.

The above example show that some technology journalists are also focusing on the wider picture but there is some concern that this is not the norm. A colleague, Prue Robson (@pruerobson – Twitter), shared this article with me yesterday, “Meerkat is dying – and it’s taking U.S. tech journalism with it” by @teroterotero (Twitter).

This article discusses some of the ramifications of journalists getting caught up in the hype of newly released apps.  If technology investors get burnt too often when they act on the hype (yes, I know it’s about “buyer beware” but still it’s clear that reporting influences investment decisions across sectors), the sector may well see less investment, or at least much more conservative investment, in the future.  That can only be bad for technology developers and users in the longer term. It could also see cities relying on such investment to grow future employment growth in creative industries suffering as a result.

@melanie_james (Twitter) signing out.


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