Print Friendly Version Convert to PDF Convert to RTF
July 23, 2015

PRSA Member Discusses NASA’s Social Media Strategy with WIRED

NASA has a wide-reaching, highly strategic social media approach, that recently included offering an “exclusive” to Instagram. However, as a public agency, it has to carefully approach social media due to legal and ethical reasons. To discuss this fine line, WIRED’s Nick Stockton interviewed PRSA member Frank Wellman, CEO of the public relations firm ScoutComms. Wellman is a retired Army public affairs officer who helped pioneer the branch’s social media strategy.
Wellman stated that government agencies like NASA can’t exhibit favoritism toward a private company, but can use platforms like Facebook and Instagram to deliver “news-like content.” He said the challenge for NASA is “avoiding revenue generation on your back.”
Wellman discussed additional issues with the agency focusing on social, rather than traditional, media. For example, Wellman said that social media helps agencies like NASA play to “superfans” rather than obtaining critical coverage. Wellman shared an example from his Army days: “We could put on the Army’s Facebook page that ‘Today we killed 20 Afghans in an accidental bombing’ and the superfans would respond with ‘Oh my God, I love America and soldiers and they’re amazing.'”
To read the full article, which was published on WIRED on July 23, 2015, visit the website.
< back

You must be logged in to view this item.

This area is reserved for members of the news media. If you qualify, please update your user profile and check the box marked "Check here to register as an accredited member of the news media". Please include any notes in the "Supporting information for media credentials" box. We will notify you of your status via e-mail in one business day.