It has to be one of the twittervilles worst kept secrets. Richard Sambrook who has been rattling around the Corporation for 30 years has dived straight into one of the most cut-throat revenue generation machines, the USA owned stylish Edelman Public Relations Company. The BBC's director of global news, Richard Sambrook, is leaving the BBC in early 2010 after nearly 30 years.The BBc announced in November 2009, Peter Horrocks will succeed Sambrook in February 2010 but Horrocks' current job, as director of the World Service, will be combined with his new role.
Edelmans have belatedly woken up to the fact that "social meeja" is the way forward - we could have told them that eight years ago... and our Richard is head of content, blogs, websites podcasting, live video streaming and anything else that turns a humble news release into a social meeja standfast (No, I don't know what it means either but within the week we'll all be tweeting it...) The news came out as Sambrook is stuck up a mountain in Austria, but had the bright idea to use 'social meeja' to explain his plight, in future he'll have to get several layers of management to sign it off first but this time the Duckhouse Blog exclusively is happy to oblige:
It's announced today that I'm joining Edelman in May as Global Vice Chairman and Chief Content Officer. It's a new role designed to develop the opportunities for organisations to use digital media to connect directly with the public. I will also be helping to run their crisis and issues practice.
When I decided to leave the BBC I wanted to find a job that was:
- very different, but..
- still connected to global affairs
- involved in digital media
- in a creative organisation
Edelman ticks all of those boxes. They are an organisation that I have admired for taking a leading role in the use of social media, and their work on Trust and Public Engagement. Some people will be surprised that a journalist who has stuck his neck out on many occasions for the independence of news media has joined a PR company. It misses the point. Edelman are redefining corporate communications and growing fast. As digital media explodes traditional channels, they are exploiting the new opportunities that are opening up. It's a stake in the future - I'm looking forward to it.
So there you have it, straight from the horses mouth so to speak but having worked for US owned PR operations, I wonder how he will cope with time sheets and the odd difficult client chairmen demanding that his new trophy high maintenance wife is the double page spread feature in OK and US Vogue? The Duckhouse will watch this with breathtaking anticipation. But well done Richard, Salford, Manchester (Gang and Gun capital of England) is denied another BBC immigrant and as to the BBC broadcast general election output, Sambrook joins Edelmans in May so May 6th it must be.Julian Bray
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