May Newsletter

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Mark Zuckerberg’s hearing in the European Parliament on May 22 was a textbook example of how not to grill a speaker or chair a debate.

After pontificating for an hour, MEPs let the Facebook boss cherrypick which questions he answered in his 20-minute response. This technique of bunching questions together encourages long-windedness from interrogators and evasiveness from speakers. It also makes for a lousy debate.

If only MEPs had read our ’10 Commandments for Conference Organisers’ first:



Talking of conferences, we’ll have a stand at the European Communication Summit in Berlin on June 13-14. As we’re complete virgins on the conference-circuit and view most corporate goodies as useless, predictable or cheesy, we asked for advice on how to attract people to our booth on LinkedIn.

We received loads of great tips but the best was probably from digital guru Mathew Lowry: “No-one will ever give you a six-figure contract because you gave them a six-cent pen. Bring that coffee machine, water and a sign saying ‘free training, advice and hugs.'” So we’re going to do just that.

If you’re going to ECS pop by our stand for some free coffee, media training, hugs and Belgian chocolates. Just don’t forget that six-figure contract.



If there’s one person who knows what it’s like to be in the middle of a crisis it’s Amadeu Altafaj. As European Commission spokesperson he spent two years’ firefighting the EU’s biggest ever crisis when the euro teetered on the brink of collapse. After leaving the Commission he was the Representative of the Catalan government to the EU, only to see his post dissolved by Madrid.

For our next session on June 18, Amadeu will join experienced communication consultant – and News and Booze co-founder – Jo Sullivan to discuss how to keep calm and carry on communicating when a crisis hits. Save the date and register here.



In line with the new GDPR regulation that entered into force on 25 May, we have updated our privacy policy to provide more transparency.

Here’s our promise:

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Meet Meg Stringer, our clear writing coach. If you or your colleagues struggle to write clearly and concisely in English, sign up for one of our tailor-made workshops. We can’t promise to turn you into a professional wordsmith overnight but we can help you tighten your texts, axe ugly jargon and get to the point quicker.



  • Dan Sobovitz: The man on a mission to prove that neither LinkedIn nor the European Commission has to be boring.
  • We absolutely love this #SheisWe campaign by Phrenos for #EDD18. A campaign for empowering women and for a more inclusive world.
  • Almost half a million journalists in the EU. That is 10% higher than 5 years ago, according to Eurostat. This figure seems unlikely given layoffs in the profession. But it depends on one’s definition of who’s a journalist.
  • Media and politics nerds – like us – may prefer Twitter for news. But most Europeans favour Facebook. According to Pew Research CenterFacebook is the top social media site for news in Western Europe.
  • Worldwide, the percentage of women working in media, newspapers, radio and TV increased from 27% to 41% between 2000 and 2015 according to the Global Media Monitoring Project.

About Aurelie Vo Thi

A graduate in advertising from the IHECS school of communication and European affairs from ULB, Aurélie worked in the European Parliament and a child-rights organisation in London before joining Clear Europe.

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