Another tougradio-interviewh reminder in today’s NYT for corporations and organizations of the near impossibility to protect some intellectual property in a Web 2.0 world.

The Times reports on a taped radio interview between a talk radio host and Sentator Christopher Dodd that became heated.  Apparently, the radio host was released (read, fired) after the interview and the station decided not to air it. 

Somehow, a day or two later, the interview turned up on a local Internet site and things were off to the races.  It was downloaded time and again and began showing up all over, despite the radio station’s decision not to air the interview and initial efforts to limit its airing by others.

I’m not so interested in the content of the interview.  I don’t know the interviewer, and I may be wrong, but it just feels like another shock jock picking a fight with a public figure to drive up ratings.

That’s not the point of this post.  Corporations, organizations and their professional communicators need to understand that whatever they put in writing, send in an email, say in an interview or post in a blog can be in the public domain in a matter of seconds.  No “cease and desist” letter can stuff the contents back into Pandora’s box.

That certainly doesn’t mean stop communicating.  It does mean that understanding and awareness of the rules, or lack thereof, of today’s Web 2.0 world is important.  It may also mean (in some circumstances) that transparency and openness with most corporate matters trumps the ways we used to do it.

When some major corporations, that just a decade ago would have gone to the mat legally in certain IP matters and trade secrets, are now comfortable open-sourcing some of their R&D, we know the world has changed.

Post by Nick Vehr – 11.17.08

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