Oh, That Test!

Over the summer, my wife and I ran into an old friend: PR maven Robbie Vorhaus on the streets of his hometown of Sag Harbor. I’ve known Robbie for far too many years that I’d care to admit. We reminisced about the PR biz back in the day when the choice of media channels and methods for gaining mindshare seemed so finite (and manageable). 

He eventually reminded me of “the test,” which I hadn’t thought about in years. Back then, I had devised a media relations questionnaire for prospective hires, which served as a non-scientific barometer of one’s experience toiling in the PR trenches. Sample questions included:

Fill in the cities: 

__________ Times Picayune
__________ Globe
__________ Inquirer

Where can one watch:

KUSA-TV _____________
WMAQ-TV _____________
KGO-TV _______________

What do the following stand for:

SMT ___________________
DMA ___________________
VOT __________________

The questionnaire also asked prospective employees to match high-profile journalists with their national news organizations and even NY-based news organizations with their street addresses.  There were also some practice questions as well:

  • Both “Good Morning America” and “Today” have requested to interview your celebrity client. How do you determine which should get the booking? 
  • You accidentally gave both Time and Newsweek the same “exclusive” photo.  Now what?     

(Gee, life was so easy back then!)

The test ran about 3-4 pages.  For today’s new world order, I thought the time was ripe to update the questionnaire, which, again, only provides a glimpse of one’s media connectivity and curiosity (versus PR acumen).  Internet access d̶i̶d̶n̶’̶t̶ ̶e̶x̶i̶s̶t̶ is forbidden during the administration of this test.

The PR 3.0 Questionnaire

Rank the following in order of their unique visitors per month:

___ NYTimes.com

___ Gawker.com

___ Politico.com

___ TechCrunch.com

___ HuffingtonPost.com

Match the following people with their place of work:

Dennis Crowley ___________                               Facebook

Tina Brown  _____________                                 Foursquare

Andrew Mason _____________                             Twitter

Pete Cashmore _______________                          Groupon

Sheryl Sandberg _______________                       Google

Larry Page __________________                          Mashable

Vivian Schiller _____________                              NBC

Jack Dorsey __________________                        The Daily Beast

Describe the following:

Spotify ________________________________________________

GroupMe ______________________________________________

Flipboard _______________________________________________

GetGlue _______________________________________________

Instagram ______________________________________________

Tumblr ________________________________________________

Bit.ly __________________________________________________

BuddyMedia ___________________________________________

Who is Siri?


Whose Twitter handles are these?

@Carr2N _______________________

@APlusk _______________________

@acarvin ___________________

@pkafka ________________________

@benpolitico _____________________

@Xeni _________________________

@Zee _____________________

@Dens _____________________

@Ev _______________________

@Finkd _____________________

What are The Shorty Awards?


Where can one find The App Store?


What’s the significance of Twitter hashtags?


Match the following journalists with their news organizations:

Emily Chang ______________                                   CNN

Andrew Ross Sorkin _______________                     NPR

Bob Garfield ____________________                       Bloomberg TV

Piers Morgan ____________________                      Dow Jones

Kara Swisher ____________________                      The New York Times

Lara Logan _____________________                       Business Insider

Henry Blodget ___________________                      CBS News             

True or False?

The Huffington Post owns AOL ____

The Atlantic’s digital ad revenue is greater than its print ad revenue _____

Fox News Channel is “fair & balanced” _____

Bill Keller has left The New York Times  _____

Fairchild Publications is the parent company of W Magazine & WWD _____

Which does IAC NOT own:

The Daily Beast, Newsweek, Match.com, Vimeo, Expedia, Ask.com, Gothamist? 


What do the following abbreviations stand for?

SXSW ___________________

API _____________________

iOS 5 ____________________

RT ______________________

HTML5 __________________

DM _____________________

NYTM ___________________

Complete the following:

President Obama recently made news in social media circles. He joined ______________.

Michael Arrington recently quit ______________ to start a _____________________.

Lance Ulanoff is the new editor of ________________.

Frank Rich recently left The New York Times to write for ____________________. 

Anderson Cooper is the son of ______________________.

Robert Scoble first made a name for himself blogging for ______ under the name __________.

Keith Olbermann has his own show on _________________.

What is the standard email nomenclature for journalists at:

The Wall Street Journal  ____________________

The Associated Press ____________________

Conde Nast __________________________

How many years has CBS “60 Minutes” been on the air? ___23  ___33 or ___43 years

What is Mediaite and which ABC News contributor founded it? _________________

How does Twitter make money?


Which print magazine has the largest U.S. readership ______________________?

When is it OK to pitch a story idea via a Twitter direct message?


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