Wolfstar – Monthly Round Up – September

As we now move into October and fully into autumn, it’s time for us to take a look back at the stories which made the headlines over the month of September. As always, we’re rounding up PR-related talking points alongside the social media news you may have missed.

Nike delivers controversial Colin Kaepernik campaign

If you didn’t see the Nike Colin Kaepernik news in September, where were you? We’ll only forgive you if you took a month long holiday to a remote island without TV or WiFi.

Against the backdrop of NFL players kneeling during the national anthem to protest against racial inequality and police brutality among other issues in the US, Nike launched an advertisement with Colin Kaepernik, a NFL player who took a knee. Its tagline was: “believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.

Naturally a campaign of this nature was always going to cause controversy as many Americans do not agree with the protests, believing them to be disrespectful to the flag.

Nike nevertheless did it (see what we did there?) and the bold move made them the most talked about brand of the month. The reactions to the advert and PR surrounding the story ranged from heart-warming to ridiculous. One man supposedly burned his Nike trainers whilst they were still on his feet, ending up in hospital: or at least so the story goes. Social media had a field day as it always does.

Nike is a calculated global giant which doesn’t make decisions on a whim, so we expect the impact of such a campaign has been assessed and it expects a positive overall result. Interesting to see such a huge brand jump in on a sensitive topic.

Kevin Hart bans phones at gig

Early in the month news broke that fans of US comedian, Kevin Hart, had been kicked out of a show for breaking the comedian’s strict “no phones policy. It was a story that divided opinion as the fans claimed they’d been removed for something as little as sending a text.

The gig in question employed aptly named ‘cell phone security’ personnel who patrolled the venue to stop the audience using their devices. The argument is that smartphones ruin the atmosphere of the gig and dissolve the connection between performer and audience.

It’s an understandable one and if you’ve been to a live show of any kind recently you’ll see the army of arms which go up to capture key moments. Maybe you’re annoyed by this or maybe you’re part of the army. It begs the question. would you rather be there and experience it or record it to watch back later?

Younger age groups are so driven and engrained in social media however that part of the experience is to showcase on multiple social channels. If it’s not on Instagram how would anyone know you were there, right? Also, if you’re paying good money for a ticket, shouldn’t you be allowed to capture the memory of your favourite comedian or artist?

The debate will rage on and we’ll sit largely on the fence on this one as there’s pros and cons to banning phones totally at events. However, I think we can all agree ‘cell phone security’ is a bit much.

Some Other PR and Social Media-y Stuff:

Things you may have missed which you may want to check out:

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