The Cycle

Tournament: Consumer tech advance that most benefited PR

Hello, it’s time for PRWeek’s second competition of the year. This time, we’re moving gingerly away from people and their blogs to try to find the best consumer-focused technological enhancement in the past ten years (NOTE: not considered for the competition are marketing-focused tools, like newswires, measurement services, etc.). We’re going to open the selection process for the competition a bit. A steering committee of John Bell of Ogilvy, Steve Rubel of Edelman, and Tonya Garcia of PRWeek selected 14 of the 16 items.

We need you, the audience, to a) fact-check these to make sure that it’s fair to say these technologies became popular from 1998-2008 (they could officially launch before 1998 - it’s more about when consumers began to adopt them) and b) suggest the final two technologies to round out the tournament. You can send suggestions to or leave them in the comments. After the jump, the 14 technologies.

Current slate

1. Podcasts

2. RSS

3. Camera phone

4. SMS

5. Wi-fi

6. Alternate-reality games

7. Virtual world sites (Second Life)


9. Blogging software

10. Microblogging (i.e. Twitter)

11. Social network platforms (i.e. Facebook)

12. Blackberry/Mobile e-mail

13. Video on the Web  (viral, episodic, vlogging – sharing & distribution)

14. File sharing software systems (Napster, Bittorent)

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