The latest “Principles of War”:http://www.jhuapl.edu/POW/ seminar series featured “John Rendon”:http://www.jhuapl.edu/POW/rethinking/video.cfm#rendon of the “Rendon Group”:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Rendon who spoke on the topic of strategic communication. This is an issue dear to my heart as a former PR man with a technology bent familiar with the monolithic industrial-age government department system and its lack of timely communication capability.
Rendon hits all the buzzwords mentioning “tipping points”:http://www.audible.com/adbl/site/products/ProductDetail.jsp?BV_UseBVCookie=Yes&productID=BK_HACH_000023, communities of interest, “long tails”:http://www.audible.com/adbl/site/products/ProductDetail.jsp?BV_UseBVCookie=Yes&productID=BK_HYPE_000043, social networks, user-generated content, “Blink”:http://www.audible.com/adbl/site/products/ProductDetail.jsp?BV_UseBVCookie=Yes&productID=BK_TIME_000382, etc. Without getting bogged down in all the jargon the presentation remains interesting for an audience wider than just “MountainRunner”:http://mountainrunner.us and yours truly. Rendon gives insight into the problems a modern-day government faces in an unpredictable news cycle, and highlights the dangers of not knowing how a diverse and asymmetric audience will _receive_ your message. His speech is wide of scope and blasts through a slew a topics. His scenario of a cyber attack perpetrated on a sovereign country by a community of interest geographically located in America raises an interesting legal point related to the legality of the US invasion of Afghanistan: can a country claim the right of self defence if attacked by a group within a sovereign country? Rendon brings up a number of diverse issues, connecting them in interesting ways that will give you a new appreciation of the problems in “official” communication in the 21st century.