Public relations megalith Edelman has launched a new Web-based tool to bring the press release, historically dry as a saltine, into the 21st century and the culture of Web 2.0. The tool, called StoryCrafter, can create "social media news releases" that incorporate RSS feeds, Digg and Delicious buttons, tags, talkback comments, and multimedia clips. The whole thing's a good idea, but it doesn't appear to be as well-executed as it could be: most noticeable for me was the fact that there's a lot of whitespace and consequently a lot of scrolling involved. Nevertheless, there's very little doubt that push-button, Web-based press release generators--whether StoryCrafter or some similar tool that's yet to be created--certainly have a place in the world of rich media, social media, new media, or whatever you want to call it.
As a demonstration of what can be done in StoryCrafter, Edelman used the Web tool for its own press release. Check it out. (Some pretty stinging talkback there...)