In a major announcement yesterday, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) provided new guidance to public companies stating that corporate Web sites and blogs are a suitable means for official information dissemination to investors, provided those sites are a “recognized channel for distribution.”
This apparently means that if the corporation has an openly available and accessible Web site and/or blog, that posting information to that blog satisfies legal disclosure requirements. WOW.
Entire industries (including financial services PR and wire services) have been built at least in part on the SEC’s long-standing requirement for public companies to proactively “push” information to investors via press release distribution.
This new guidance changes the game, and creates clear winners and losers.
Public Company Corporate Blogs – 4 Winners
If companies are not required to push information, then any type of alert or notification system that would make investors away of new data posted to a blog is a huge winner.
- RSS systems like Feedburner (which is really Google)
- Possibly enterprise email service providers like ExactTarget
- PR firms that understand blogging, blog management, and social media
Public Company Corporate Blogs – 3 Losers
The new SEC decision will put a serious squeeze on some, as the distribution of official press releases is an expensive and lucrative business. Losers in this new scenario include:
- Any sort of wire distribution service like PRWeb, Marketwire (which we’ve used at Convince & Convert for social media release distribution), and BusinessWire (which is a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary
- PR firms whose current service mix includes a healthy dose of financial disclosure releases
Any other winners and losers? Add a comment!