Tech, sustainability and food: what I learnt in January


January is a good time for a holiday.

Things are feeling a bit momentous today, and not just because it’s the end of the first month of the new decade.

This is my first blog of the year: I’ve stopped doing weeknotes so I suppose this monthly roundup could be called a ‘worknote’. So here are a few highlights from January. Read more ›

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Posted in Communications, Social media

Weeknote 25: red vinyl, Brexit and Father Christmas

A tray of "Christmas doughnuts".

Seasonal offerings at this month’s farmers’ market from the wonderful Pippin Doughnuts. In case you needed an excuse to Buy Local.

For a few weeks now, I’ve been seeing my peers posting messages about winding their work up for the year. I couldn’t quite join in: my final deadline this year is 24th December! Happily, I will finish the job today, and then take a week off before my next one starts.

Meanwhile, the result of a slightly different job has arrived. I wrote (some of) the sleevenotes for this reissue of the cult compilation Juke Box at Eric’s. And now I have my own copy, in limited edition red vinyl. It was fun writing about music again, so if anyone’s reading this who needs words about the post-punk Liverpool music scene please get in touch. Come to that, if anyone’s reading this who’s got an interesting web content project happening next year, please get in touch too! Read more ›

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Posted in Communications

Weeknote 24: Black Friday, Advent and “me too” marketing

Screengrab of the Ashmolean Museum website, with an online "Advent calendar". Six windows have been opened and show different winter-themed artworks.

I’ve seen a  lot of “me too” marketing in the last few weeks. First, there’s been the Black Friday sales messages, which everyone claims to find annoying. It would be interesting to see retail figures for this period, now that we’ve got used to/tired of the notion in the UK.

And then there’s been the anti-Black Friday stuff. Doing something different will get you brownie points with your customers, as well as some good PR: I hadn’t heard of Canopy & Stars until one of my friends shared on Twitter that they were closing their website for the day. Now I have. (And yes, I am in the market for what they do.) Read more ›

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Posted in Content marketing

Weeknote 23: sustainability, pizza and a cat

Tweet from Pizza Express: 9:00 pm - Switch off computer    10:00 pm - 120 messages on work WhatsApp group telling you to "check Twitter now" .

Photo of the week. How to do reactive comms.

Last weekend I went to a reunion for my old workplace. My workmates were always the best thing about the company, and it was good to catch up with some of them.

As we were chatting, one of them asked me what I thought about Extinction Rebellion. I replied that if they – and the school strikers – hadn’t taken action this year, we wouldn’t now be talking about a climate emergency. And climate change would still be marginalised by the media, the politicians and the general public. Instead, Channel 4 is now going to host a leaders’ debate on the subject.

Interestingly, we’d spent most of the Creative Meetup that week talking about sustainable business. There are a few people in the group who have a background in sustainability but even those who don’t are now taking it seriously. Read more ›

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Posted in Digital media

Weeknote 22: IT jargon, style sheets and air pollution

Picture of John Bercow with the caption "Spare us the theatrics".

John Bercow gifs are doing the rounds on Twitter this week.

This week, I’ve been thinking about jargon. You get a lot of jargon when working in a technical job, and you get a lot of jargon when working in HR. I’m editing some IT job descriptions at the moment, so that combination has been fun. Read more ›

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Posted in Copy-editing