I have been spending most of time paying attention to stats, and the power of Youtube.  The interesting thing about Youtube or Youchube (Jamaican vernacular coined by Ricky Trooper), if you will. I am learning a few things about how to embrace this extension of DancehallSoca which recently started to produced one of many new mini series.  I tweeted earlier today saying, "It is also interesting how even when an artist misspells the title of their songs...the fans still search for the correct spelling :)"

What I noticed with our higher  viewership videos was the search for correct spelling of words by the audience which yields results.  Destra Garcia and Kerwin Dubois "Baddist" is one example.  The name of the song is Baddist but if you actually listen to the song you will think the title is "Baddest".  Therefore, it was easy to conclude that some would search for the song as "Baddest".  What is in a name?  Well, as it appears thousands of views and free advertising for the song and the creator of the video....

As the journey continues.....

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The Caribbean Media Exchange (CMEx) launched a partnership with New York University's top-ranked Public Relations and Corporate Communication program to take media resources and expertise to the communications and public relations sectors of the Caribbean business communities.

Recognizing hard-working PR professionals in most regions do not have enough time to keep up with new developments, CMEx President Bevan Springer asserted the partnership with NYU would "introduce the Caribbean public relations industry to the latest in top notch research to help practitioners promote sustainable tourism development."

He also pointed to the longer term benefits of the program "which provides educational materials we can use in our communities and reference in the future."

Springer worked with NYU's adjunct professor Robert Noltenmeier to design the partnership which will provide educational resources to various public relations practice areas within the hospitality community in the Caribbean.

The program will broadly discuss the current state of the industry, but will focus on three key areas.

The first is a media relations program, overviewing challenges facing public relations practitioners. The program will be led by NYU graduate student Stephanie Dressler, and will cover proactive and reactive media relations strategies from marketing and pitching, to best practices in dealing with media inquiries.

Graduate student Richard Yumang will head the social media conversation which changes rapidly. Yumang will report on the latest brand-building techniques applied through social media strategies, as well as the importance of monitoring social media channels, and determining selective response scenarios.

Rounding out the program, NYU's Patrick Canavan will address the timely topic of crisis communication. The catastrophic earthquake in Haiti and the deadly double disaster wrought by an earthquake tsunami in Japan illustrate how incredibly damaging crises can occur at any time.

Springer contended the management of crisis communication "can alleviate the suffering and aid reconstruction efforts at a time when communication can be chaotic and alarming."

The deadly BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is a man-made disaster that will serve as a case study. Canavan will present tools for assessing when it's time to address a crisis. The way a company reacts after a crisis can define them in the future.

The program kick-starts the 10 year anniversary of CMEx, to be held in the Caribbean this fall, with a series of news releases on the importance of public relations practices and follows with substantive presentations.

The materials developed by the team will be available free of charge for Caribbean-based industry professionals.

New York University's master's program in public relations and corporate communication is offered through the School of Continuing and Professional Studies. The academically rigorous program, which was named "PR Program of the Year" by PRWeek in 2009 and 2010, stresses a practitioner-oriented curriculum that focuses on mastering skills in research, strategic planning, written and oral communication, social media, measurement, and ethical leadership. Faculty members are noted scholars and world class practitioners who have led communications practices at some of the largest companies and agencies in the world. For more information on the program, visit www.scps.nyu.edu/mspr.  

About The Caribbean Media Exchange (CMEx)
CMEx's mission is to support and develop the ability of the media, government, the travel and tourism industry and communities to consider the importance of tourism in sustainable development, while lending a hand to the communities involved by sharing relevant expertise, financial and in-kind assistance.

For additional details, visit www.cmexmedia.org.

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Cherrie Illidge-McKenna is the new Board Chairman of the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL). Illidge-McKenna, who grew up on the Caribbean island of St. Croix in the United States Virgin Islands, assumes board leadership of one of the leading multi-disciplinary arts centers in southeast Queens, New York.

The center features two of the most impressive arts spaces in New York City -  its 45,000 square-foot headquarters visual arts and education center, and the new 400-seat Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC). Illidge-McKenna succeeds Leilani Brown who led the organization admirably through a period of transition and strategic planning over the past two and a half years.

President of Greater Jamaica Development Corporation, F. Carlisle Towery, said: "Cherrie's contributions will position JCAL for its next phase of growth, and we are pleased to have her lead JCAL to greater reach and influence in our partnerships in the exciting revitalization of downtown Jamaica."

The new chairman has held several key management positions with HSBC Bank, including Vice President - Global Transaction Banking, Institutional Sales; Head of Diversity; and Vice President of Commercial e-Business. She has also served as Chief of Staff for American Express' Global Corporate Technologies and as an IT Consultant / Senior Engineer delivering technology solutions to Fortune 100 companies.

Most recently, as a founding director, she opened a new K-8 charter school in Queens and continues to help drive educational reform. Illidge-McKenna is known for championing diversity initiatives and multicultural programs across various corporate, nonprofit and community organizations. She serves on the executive board of Jack and Jill of America - Queens Chapter, and the National Black MBA Association - NY Metro Chapter.

She is also a founding member of The Metropolitan Museum of Art Multicultural Advisory Board and a member of Christian Cultural Center in Brooklyn. 

Illidge-McKenna has traveled extensively across every continent except Australia and Antarctica, and enjoys returning to both St. Croix and St. Martin/St. Maarten which she also considers home. In addition, she was an Earthwatch Environmental Fellow, where she did field research on crocodiles to help build a sustainable economy in Botswana, Africa.

Illidge-McKenna received an undergraduate degree in Computer Information Systems from Hofstra University and earned her MBA in Marketing and Management from St. John's University Graduate School of Business.

JCAL's Executive Director, Philip Willis, thanked Leilani Brown for her outstanding leadership and stated: "We are fortunate to have someone like Cherrie leading the Board at this pivotal point in our evolution. Like Leilani, she brings to the Board's leadership a unique set of skills and life experiences that will benefit the organization immensely as it addresses the challenges ahead."

Cherrie Illidge-McKenna is married and has two sons.

About Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL)
For almost 40 years, the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL) has served as an arts oasis in a section of New York City where cultural opportunities are extremely limited. Created in 1972 as part of an effort to revitalize Jamaica, JCAL has earned a reputation for inspiring youth to take an interest in the arts, showcasing the talents of up-and-coming local artists and performers, and creating dynamic multicultural programs and workshops that have been embraced by the community. Each year, tens of thousands of visitors of all ages, backgrounds and skill sets pass through its doors to attend classes and workshops, view art exhibitions, attend performances or immerse themselves in an art residency.

For further information, visit www.jcal.org  

About Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC)
Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC) is a mid-size, multipurpose performance venue housed in a completely renovated 1858 landmark building - the former First Reformed Dutch Church of Jamaica. JPAC is a showcase for local, regional and national artists and performers. This beautiful 400-seat theater is surrounded by stained glass windows giving the space an almost ethereal quality. State-of-the-art lighting and sound systems enhance the experience all the more. JPAC is destined to become one of the premier destination spots in New York City for intimate concerts and other performances. Visit http://www.jamaica-performingartscenter.org for more information.

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