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  • Publications
  • Thoughts
  • Chatbots: The opportunity is vast but not without risk

    Since Facebook unveiled its 'Bot Platform' for Messenger at its F8 Facebook Developer Conference last year, over 30,000 chatbots have been created – and pushed live – on Facebook’s messaging platform alone.

    May’s Downing Street merry go-round

    Wounded Theresa May made only minor changes to her Cabinet after the election disaster but Downing Street has undergone seismic change. May’s hand was forced by the parliamentary party to dispose of her two joint chief of staff. Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill received the brunt of the initial blame for the election defeat and their departures were effectively the price May paid to remain in post.

    Brexit talks round two: time for a touch of humility?

    Last weekend saw a new front to the Brexit debate open when Professor Roger Cashmore, chair of the UK Atomic Energy Agency, described the decision to leave Euratom - the European Atomic Energy Community - as “alarming”.

    If I had one bit of advice…

    Be more corporate. Said no-one, ever. Certainly not in language and certainly not in the type of behaviour that came to symbolise the nineties and the noughties. However, where corporates have been successful is in the art of making arguments. In recent times, many corporates have been effective in setting out what they stand for as a business. Sport – as an industry – could take heed.

    Sport takes bronze when understanding importance of reputation management

    Proper strategic planning on the communications side, whatever the boxing trash talkers or football manager mind gamers may think, will never have anything more than a marginal impact on the outcome of a sporting contest. But it can have a big impact on the way a sporting body, a club, a brand, an individual, are seen; its reputation, built over time.

    Businesses now need to engage with all political parties

    The political landscape has changed forever as a result of the election, according to a panel of experts assembled by Portland. Businesses now need to engage with all political parties, they said. And traditional media has lost its influence.

    Are we witnessing the decline of Europe’s right wing firebrands?

    2016 was the year of the right wing populism in Western politics. Trump, Farage, Le Pen and others in their molds saw huge surges in support, if not outright - and often stunning - wins. Voters, tired of starched and sanitised political professionals were attracted to straight-talking anti-establishment figures and for a while, it seemed that the right had a monopoly on charisma.

    Learning Chinese: Media in the 21st Century

    To understand media in the 21st Century, we will all, at least figuratively, need to learn Chinese. Traditional media are already feeling the shift. The international re-launch of CGTN – China Global Television Network – marks a turning point in international broadcast journalism. 

    Portland welcomes Katrin Kuhlmann to Advisory Council

    Katrin Kuhlmann, a global leader and nonprofit executive in the international economic development and trade policy arena, has joined Portland’s International Advisory Council.

    May’s gamble fails

    Theresa May will soldier on as a broken-backed Prime Minister facing the prospect of her government collapsing at any moment. She will become a “caretaker PM” - forming a feeble administration with the help of the Democratic Unionist Party and seek to run the country on a day-to-day basis.

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