• Penn State Parking Memo We Can All Relate To

    by  • December 2, 2011

    Some time ago, the folks at Penn State University decided to solve the main campus’ parking problems once and for all with this memorandum to the university community: “The redesignation of Green F, Red F and Yellow F is in process. We alerted you earlier that Green F will be redesignated to be Green B; [...]

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    Media Relations 101: Contacts Don’t Mean That Much

    by  • December 2, 2011

    Despite the claims of public relations agencies and others, their “contacts” in the news media are not the keys to news coverage. The actual keys, according to journalists, are a story’s relevance to readers, its newsworthiness, its content and the local angle. That said, it is important to hire someone who has a professional relationship [...]

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    Writing and Editing Tests Can Help Avoid Disaster

    by  • December 2, 2011

    If you are looking to fill a writing or editing position or even support jobs that require language skills in your public relations, marketing or communications office you may want to consider a simple battery of tests. A spelling test. Give the applicant 20 challenging words and ask her or him to select the misspelled [...]

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    For Careful Writers and Editors Only

    by  • December 2, 2011

    Some thoughts for careful writers and editors to ponder. Is there any good reason to say “utilize” instead of “use”? Does anyone know what “e.g.” and “i.e” mean? Why do football players always “sustain” injuries? It’s got to be a lot tougher than “suffering” them. Seems like it is always better to “reside” in a [...]

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    The Rarely Heard Quintuple Cliché

    by  • December 2, 2011

    We’ve always admired the work of Bill Conlin, one of the greatest baseball writers ever. So some years back, when Conlin covered a Philadelphia Eagles football game for the Philadelphia Daily News we were not surprised that he uncovered “the rarely heard quintuple cliché.” It came from defensive back Ray Ellis after the Eagles lost [...]

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    Misquoting Some of the World’s Most Famous Quotes

    by  • December 2, 2011

    We’ve all heard these famous quotes many, many times. “An eye for an eye.” “Necessity is the mother of invention.” “Put your best foot forward.” “Blood, sweat and tears.” “Money is the root of all evil.” One problem. They’re all wrong, points out William W. Craig of Tisdall Clark and Partners, Ltd. of Toronto. “An [...]

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    Top 10 Books for High Schoolers to Read

    by  • December 2, 2011

    A 1985 survey of principals and teachers in Chicago-area high schools produced this list of the top 10 books educators felt every high school student should read. Plays by William Shakespeare (various titles) “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain The Bible “The Scarlet Letter” by Nathaniel Hawthorne “The Odyssey” by Homer “The Grapes [...]

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    How to Desk for Success

    by  • December 2, 2011

    Dr. William Jurma, a speech communication professor at Texas Christian University, once conducted a study of offices in Fort Worth, Texas. Here’s a summary of his findings. Wooden desks are a must. Forget metal or chrome. In and out boxes are out. A dark-colored phone is best. Beige is acceptable. A clean desk is not [...]

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    Creativity in Employment Application Lands a McDonald’s Job

    by  • December 2, 2011

    Here’s a creative job application we’ve always loved. It landed the applicant a job at McDonald’s in Florida. Name: Greg Bulmash Sex: Not yet. Still waiting for the right person. Desired position: Company’s president or vice president. But seriously, whatever’s available. If I was in a position to be picky, I wouldn’t be applying here [...]

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    Management Advice to Live By

    by  • December 2, 2011

    Some years back, legendary PR guy Keith Moore conducted a national survey of public relations managers in higher education. We thought some of the responses to the question, “What advice would you give to a new manager?” were thoughtful and fascinating. “Listen, coach, guide—direct, look slightly up to everyone, be patient, don’t be afraid to [...]

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