Common Sense vs. Nonsense: What Thomas Paine Can Teach Us About Disclosure

April 22, 2013
by Cathy Baron Tamraz, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Business Wire
Cathy Baron Tamraz

Cathy Baron Tamraz, Chairman & CEO, Business Wire

Herb Greenberg, the respected CNBC market commentator who first asked whether Netflix violated Reg FD with its use of social media, subsequently put the issue into its proper perspective: It’s all about “common sense.”

Unfortunately, common sense seems to be in short supply these days, as attempts to redefine “full and fair disclosure” depreciate its value to market participants.

In a prescient post in July 2012 (, Greenberg asked whether Netflix CEO Reed Hastings side-stepped Reg FD by touting on his Facebook page that Netflix had set a new milestone in monthly viewing.

The provocative post apparently caught the eye of SEC officials; the agency filed a Wells Notice against Hastings and Netflix, indicating an inquiry into whether there was a basis to pursue the allegations.

Common-Sense-DisclosureGreenberg, in a December 2012 post, reflected on the surprising reaction of some folks to the SEC’s action. As far as Greenberg was concerned, the issue was simple.

“Bottom line: I’m all in favor of social media as a point of dissemination,” Greenberg wrote.” “They aren’t going away. But public companies and executives want to use them, and they have to play by the rules. That means, simply, issue a press release at the same time. Simple common sense, don’t you think?”

The SEC tweaked the rules recently by issuing a report on the possible use of social media tools for compliance purposes. Unfortunately, the agency’s report generated a lot of heat, but little illumination.

Thomas Paine, in talking about government and society, wrote his passionate pamphlet called “Common Sense” in 1776. Written more than 200 years ago, his words are timeless:

“There is something exceedingly ridiculous in the composition of the monarchy. It first excludes a man from the means of information, yet empowers him to act in cases where the highest judgement is required.”

Common sense dictates that full and fair disclosure means that all market participants have simultaneous, real-time access to market-moving information. Business Wire has a patented news delivery platform — “NX” — that ensures network recipients worldwide have equal, unrestricted and simultaneous access.

Common sense dictates the overriding importance of network security, and the vetting of corporate announcements to validate their source. Business Wire’s network systems are audited annually by independent management consultants, ensuring compliance with the rigorous standards of securities regulators in multiple international jurisdictions. Additionally, Business Wire has close to 200 editors — and authentication procedures — to provide credible, vetted information to the capital markets.

Common sense dictates that an audit trail exists to protect issuers in the event of a regulatory investigation. As a point of fact, the SEC itself utilizes Business Wire’s audit trail when investigating companies that have caught their attention.

Common sense dictates that the recommendations of prominent professional organizations such as The National Investor Relations Institute be factored into policy decisions. Specifically, NIRI’s “Best Practices” call for a combination of Reg-FD compliant platforms to ensure the broadest possible investor outreach.

Common sense dictates that service providers adapt the latest technologies. Business Wire’s multi-channel platform has long embraced social media (it has 61 industry Twitter feeds). In fact, Business Wire is the industry technology leader with five patents, including two for social media innovations.

Common sense tells us that information should be simultaneous and ubiquitous. Excluding anyone from access to material information is the road to chaos, leading to a possible return to the “Whisper on Wall Street.” Ironically, this is the very thing that Regulation Fair Disclosure sought to eliminate in 2000.

Clearly, there is no substitute for common sense. While it is apparently lacking in some circles, the encouraging news is that the investor relations industry has a proud history of taking a pragmatic and thoughtful approach in meeting its professional obligations, as confirmed by this recent NIRI survey.

The silver lining, as Thomas Paine and Herb Greenberg have taught us, is that common sense never goes out of style.

IR Sites and Social Media: Integrated and Automated Equal Effective and Efficient

April 17, 2013
by Ibrey Woodall, VP Web Communications Services, Business Wire
Ibrey Woodall

Ibrey Woodall, VP, Web Communication Services

Last week, Business Wire CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz was interviewed on CNBC’s “Closing Bell” by Maria Bartiromo and Bill Griffeth. Business Wire Senior Vice President of Global Media Neil Hershberg relayed the finer points of that discussion in a blog post titled Social Media in the Spotlight: Business Wire CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz Talks About the SEC’s Guidance on CNBC. As noted, the SEC now allows social media channels – once formally announced – to be utilized for Regulation Fair Disclosure communication, along with press releases, investor relations web sites, webcasts and filings.

Any communications professional worth their salt knows that communications tools are tactics, and that tactics are much more productive when exercised in unison. The fitting strategy is to coordinate these tools to work together automatically so that they are not only effective, but also efficient and timely.

Superior practices performed by multiple investor relations officers (IROs) begin with a safeguarded earnings release broadly distributed and tweeted by an established, trusted wire service. The next step is to make sure that the earnings press release posts directly and simultaneously from the wire service onto the company’s investor center, and into the correct category. If a third-party aggregator is used, there may be a delay in that press release being accessible and organized correctly on the IR site. If the IR site is solely used as a means of disclosure, there is the potential security concern that the information may be found before it is officially made available to all parties. Sadly, this has been experienced by some companies.

The IR communications professional is also responsible for determining that the IR site accepts registration for select email alert and

IR site visitors should be able to share posted content either by emailing, tweeting or posting onto social networks.

IR site visitors should be able to share posted content either by emailing, tweeting or posting onto social networks.

text message or Short Message Service (SMS) delivery. Investors, analysts, financial media, executives, and others who have expressed a desire to be notified when an earnings release is posted must immediately receive either the chosen email alert or mobile alert delivery method, or both. It is imperative that the message be identified as being delivered from the company’s official investor center, and should always contain a link to the full text version of the press release located on the IR site.

There are ways to successfully implement social media tools into the IR communications mix – in a useful and harmless manner. This can be done by integrating authorized social networks and a sharing module. Once a material news release is automatically posted onto the IR site, the IRO should then, if desired, be able to distribute an official tweet, as well as post onto Facebook or LinkedIn from the IR site administration dashboard. This creates a much more efficient workflow than logging into individual company social networks and preparing messages to tweet or post.

At the minimum, social media badges should be visible on the Home Page of the IR site, but if there is a company Twitter stream, it should also be integrated and displayed. Site visitors can then quickly see the most recent tweets made by the company, including the earnings release announcement, the scheduled webcast event, and the video interview of the Chief Executive Officer or Chief Financial Officer discussing the latest earnings release. The Twitter stream should contain only tweets made by the company, and not include tweets by followers.

The addition of a sharing module within an IR site expands the distribution potential of vital content. Once the earning press release is officially public and available on the IR site, site visitors can share their interest in that news by electing to tweet or post the content onto their social networks or send it by email.

There are many helpful ways to utilize social media in IR communications; however, when it comes to full and fair disclosure, these communications tools should be used as part of an overall strategy in conjunction with tried and true, secure communications techniques.


Ibrey Woodall is the VP Web Communications Services for Business Wire. She actively writes and speaks about online public relations including web services such online newsrooms, and IR web sites. She can be reached at, LinkedIn: Ibrey Woodall or via Twitter @IbreyWoodall.

Social Media in the Spotlight: Business Wire CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz Talks About the SEC’S Guidance on CNBC

April 11, 2013
by Neil Hershberg, Senior Vice President, Global Media/Business Wire

Business Wire CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz is rapidly becoming the public face of full and fair disclosure.Tamraz appeared on CNBC’s “Closing Bell” Tuesday, where co-anchors Maria Bartiromo and Bill Griffeth interviewed her on the potential market implications of the SEC’s recent guidance on the use of social media for Reg FD compliance.

Video Clip:

Tamraz quickly distilled the key issues of the disclosure debate, explaining that popular social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook — while effective in extending investor outreach — are only one component of full and fair disclosure. She added that social media complements other Reg FD-compliant channels, including a broadly disseminated news release via a legitimate wire service, posting on an IR web site, webcasts, and regulatory filings. All these elements contribute to a “Best Practices” disclosure program that equitably and inclusively serves the needs of all market participants.

She emphasized that Business Wire makes extensive use of social media tools as part of its multi-channel distribution platform, and that the company holds five technology patents, including two in social media. One patent — its “NX” news delivery platform — is key to the disclosure discussion because it ensures simultaneous, real-time access to market-moving information by all network recipients worldwide. Simultaneity and market fairness is what Reg FD is all about; Business Wire’s unique ability to meet this stringent requirement has been independently validated by patent authorities in multiple jurisdictions.

Additionally, Business Wire provides an audit trail for every release, which is a critical benefit in the event of a regulatory investigation. There also are multiple archives, including such popular databases as Factiva and Lexis/Nexis, that provide an easily accessible and reliable record of all corporate announcements.Tamraz has emerged in recent years as an outspoken advocate of Reg FD’s guiding principles: full and fair disclosure and a “level playing field.”  She has written extensively on the topic, appeared before regulatory agencies and advisory councils focusing on corporate governance issues, and is the industry’s most vocal proponent of providing all investors — institutional and individual alike — with equal and unrestricted access to price-sensitive information.

Press Release:
Business Wire Says Social Media Platforms Are Only One Component of Full and Fair Disclosure and Offers Issuers a Guide on How to Effectively Use Social Media Tools

Blog Post:
What Can Louisville’s Kevin Ware Teach the SEC and Public Companies About Social Media?

Seeing through SEDAR

February 26, 2013
by Ciaran Ryan & Zara McAlister, Business Wire/Toronto

SEDAR doesn’t have to be complicated.

This was the message Nancy Desjardins wanted to get across at a recent SEDAR training session in downtown Toronto. Desjardins manages SEDAR relations (EDGAR’s Canadian counterpart) at the Canadian Depository for Securities Limited (CDS). She’s the person to call if you ever find yourself trapped in a SEDAR-related conundrum.

On February 21st Desjardins mapped out the SEDAR process for an audience of both veteran and novice filers.  She admits the filing software is archaic–it hasn’t changed since the organization’s inception 16 years ago—but Desjardins insists the system works perfectly as long as you know how to use it. Here are some quick tips from the session that will hopefully make your next SEDAR filing go off without a hitch.

Double check what you’re submitting

This first one may seem obvious, but mistakes do happen and they can be difficult to fix in the SEDAR universe. Let’s say a company files a document only to realize later that it was the wrong one, or that it contained confidential information. Unfortunately, once the document has been sent to the SEDAR server it’s there forever, so be sure to double-check everything you send to your filer. Most corrections can be made by submitting another filing, but the original document will remain posted on the website unless you can prove to your principal securities commission that it contains confidential material. Only then can it be marked private and made invisible on the website.

Disclose company changes

Keep filers up-to-date with the most current profile information for your company. Inform them of any company name changes, new contacts, addresses and any other pertinent amendments, so the filer can update the profile through the SEDAR software accordingly. These changes will then become publicly visible on the SEDAR website the following day.

Be specific

When it comes to annual and interim filings the more information, the better.  Subscribers are asked to indicate the applicable continuous disclosure rule from a drop-down list depending on filing type selected. Although many filings fall under the National Instrument 51-102 rule for continuous disclosure obligations, some filings from foreign issuers (companies not headquartered in Canada) must file in accordance with National Instrument 71-102. Please disclose this kind of information to your filers since it can be hard to tell one national instrument apart from another.

Expect fees

Annual filings have reporting jurisdiction fees. Interim filings can have late fees. Only news releases are free of additional fees — unless you report to Quebec. If you want to know exactly how much you can expect to shell out for your filing, check out the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) website. You can navigate through the filing fee maze by selecting your exact filing type and document. The fees are then carefully laid out according to provincial region:

Additional CDS filing fees, which apply to reporting jurisdictions and filing type, can be found on the CDS SEDAR filing fees guide:

During the session, Anne Mankikar from the Ontario Securities Commissions joked that fees only have one direction—and that’s up! Provincial jurisdiction filing fees are no exception. Stay tuned for fee changes for many provincial jurisdictions come the beginning of April.

Watch for deadlines

Missed deadlines are never a good thing. Getting your SEDAR filings in on time will save you money and additional stress. Avoid waiting to the last day to file because if you do run into problems, people like Nancy Desjardins will be harder to get in touch with due to higher call volumes on deadline days. Of course if you end up missing a deadline, you’re going to get charged with a pricey late fee.

For those who file SEDAR directly, here’s a date to add to your calendars: on April 1st a software coding update will be issued by SEDAR. The update will automatically delete any in progress SEDAR files you may have saved on your computer. So remember to submit these filings before you run the update. SEDAR will be sending out emails and faxes regarding the new coding in the near future.

REMINDER: US Stock Exchanges Closed Monday, Feb. 18

February 15, 2013

Please be aware that the U.S. exchanges (NYSE/NYSE MKT, NASDAQ, OTCBB, Pink Sheets) will be closed on Monday, February 18 in observance of Washington’s birthday.

Calendar of US Federal Holidays:

NYSE Holiday Calendar:

The following are some numbers that may be of assistance:Dow Jones: 212.416.2000

Reuters: 646.223.6000
Bloomberg: 212.617.2300US SEC Branch of EDGAR Filer Support
Telephone: (202) 942-8900

NYSE Client Services Department
Telephone: (212) 656-3000
Fax: (212) 656-7299 (212) 656-2294

Telephone: (212) 656-3000 or (212)-656-5804

NASDAQ Stockwatch
Telephone: (800) 537-3929
Fax: (301) 978-8510
Link to

OTC Bulletin Board (OTCBB)
Telephone: (203) 375-9609

U.S. Stock Exchanges Closed on Monday, Jan. 21 for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

January 18, 2013

Please be aware that the U.S. exchanges (NYSE/NYSE MKT, NASDAQ, OTCBB, Pink Sheets) will be closed on Monday, January 21 in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

Calendar of US Federal Holidays:

NYSE Holiday Calendar:

NASDAQ Holiday Calendar:

The following are some numbers that may be of assistance:

Dow Jones: 212.416.2000
Reuters: 646.223.6000
Bloomberg: 212.617.2300

US SEC Branch of EDGAR Filer Support
Telephone: (202) 942-8900

NYSE Client Services Department
Telephone: (212) 656-3000
Fax: (212) 656-7299 (212) 656-2294

Telephone: (212) 656-3000 or (212)-656-5804

NASDAQ Stockwatch
Telephone: (800) 537-3929
Fax: (301) 978-8510
Link to

OTC Bulletin Board (OTCBB)
Telephone: (203) 375-9609

Regulation Fair Disclosure: Once Again in Critics’ Cross Hairs

January 3, 2013


The need for better and broader disclosure: social media added to Reg FD-compliant disclosure vehicles is the way forward.

By Neil Hershberg
If misguided regulatory reformers have their way, the passage of Reg FD will be remembered as “The Golden Age” of full and fair disclosure.  The global paradigm of investor protection and market fairness is once again under attack by detractors, who have seemingly forgotten the landmark directive’s true spirit and intent — as well as its clearly defined compliance criteria.

Reg FD has been a lightning rod for criticism since its adoption in 2000. The latest threat promises to further emasculate Reg FD, eroding the “level playing field” that the SEC sought to enshrine for all market participants.

Critics are pushing for the recognition of social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter, as Reg FD-compliant channels for investor communications. Clearly, regulatory disclosure was never intended to be a “friends and family” rewards program, but rather a compliance model designed to service the information needs of the entire investment community.

Netflix and the SEC

The latest disclosure debate recently boiled over when Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix, revealed on his Facebook page last July that viewers had downloaded one billions hours of streaming video the previous month. Netflix’s stock spiked to a six-week high following the post, rising 13 percent and increasing the company’s market value by $542 million in one day, according to news reports. 
While there were other mitigating factors that likely contributed to the sharp rise in share price, the steep escalation in capitalization caught the attention of SEC watchdogs.
According to the SEC, Hastings’ post contained material information that should have been broadly disseminated, as opposed to being selectively disclosed to his fortunate Facebook followers.  The SEC filed a Wells Notice against both Hastings and Netflix for violating Reg FD. While the agency’s staff is recommending that a civil claim is warranted, the commissioners must still decide whether to pursue the allegation.
Interestingly, Netflix filed an 8-K to announce the SEC action, and subsequently submitted a regulatory filing to announce that Hastings’ salary would double in 2013. Netflix obviously has developed a new appreciation for recognized disclosure tools in the wake of the SEC reprimand.  
The battle lines over the use of social media have been drawn; Hastings has become the “poster boy” of social media supporters who are aggressively lobbying the SEC to revisit Reg FD and adopt new flexibility toward the use of social media.
A close look at the facts, however, confirms that enabling issuers to rely exclusively on social media to reach investors would be a major step backwards, and threatens to reverse the enormous progress made in the dozen years since Reg FD was enacted.
According to Compliance Week, Hastings’ post was not on Netflix’s corporate Facebook page, but was published on one of his three personal Facebook accounts. Clearly, investors should not have to guess whether material information is hiding behind Door #1, Door #2, or Door #3.
Reg FD is remarkably clear on this point: all investors have an equal right to simultaneous, real-time access to market-moving information. They should not have to play the Netflix equivalent of “Three-Card Monte” to get access to corporate developments that may influence their investment decisions.
The Dilemma Facing Journalists & Analysts
Liz Hester, in an article for “Talking Biz News” (a site that is popular among business journalists), described the dilemma facing journalists and analysts in the event that social media supplants closely monitored disclosure platforms:
“This means that as a business journalist you’d better be Facebook friends, a Twitter follower, Instagram tracker, blog reader and somehow connected through every social media to the people you cover,” Hester wrote. “This means your feeds will have to cover everyone from the CEO to the marketing officer to the press person. Good luck weeding through all the baby photos for real news.”
Supporters of social media have seized the opportunity to attack the SEC’s stance on the use of online platforms for disclosure compliance.
“The SEC wants CEOS to use press releases, investor conference calls or formal SEC filings to communicate,” wrote Larry Popelka, a Bloomberg Businessweek contributor in a column that appeared on “The problem with these communications is that they are cold, formal, and often don’t provide meaningful insights into company leaders’ thinking. Individuals and organizations that use social media have discovered that it is a much richer, more effective way to communicate.”
Popelka’s arguments are deeply flawed. How are messages that are limited to 140 characters, for example, an improvement in terms of providing “meaningful insights into company’s leaders thinking?”  More importantly, the purpose of disclosure has obviously been lost on Popelka.  Disclosure was never meant to be “warm and fuzzy.” Rather, the objective has always been to be “full and fair.” And Reg FD — in its current incarnation — does an exemplary job in accomplishing this goal.  
A Unified Effort to Bolster Disclosure
The warring factions should put their differences aside and join forces in a united effort to bolster disclosure. There is an underlying commonality of interests that everyone can agree to: the need for better and broader disclosure. 
The reality is that this should not be an either/or proposition. Social media is here to stay, and its importance is growing daily. Social media should be an integral part of virtually every investor communications program, in addition to any Reg FD-compliant disclosure vehicle. Using social media tools to supplement other distribution channels is a strategy that has near-universal appeal.
Herb Greenberg, the respected CNBC market commentator who first broached the issue of whether Netflix violated Reg FD last July, puts the issue into its proper perspective:
“Posting material information on a CEO’s personal social media page simply isn’t fair disclosure — no matter how many people follow it,” Greenberg concluded. “Bottom line: I’m all in favor of social media as a point of dissemination. They aren’t going away. But public companies and executives want to use them, and they have to play by the rules. That means, simply, issue a press release at the same time. Simple common sense, don’t you think?”

REMINDER: U.S. Stock Exchanges Closed Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 22

November 21, 2012

Please be aware that the U.S. exchanges (NYSE/NYSE MKT, NASDAQ, OTCBB, Pink Sheets) will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 22 in observance of Thanksgiving. Exchanges will also close early, at 1:00 pm ET, on Friday, Nov. 23.

Calendar of US Federal Holidays:

NYSE Holiday Calendar:

NASDAQ Holiday Calendar:

The following are some numbers that may be of assistance:

Dow Jones: 212.416.2000
Reuters: 646.223.6000
Bloomberg: 212.617.2300

US SEC Branch of EDGAR Filer Support
Telephone: (202) 942-8900

NYSE Client Services Department
Telephone: (212) 656-3000
Fax: (212) 656-7299 (212) 656-2294

Telephone: (212) 656-3000 or (212)-656-5804

NASDAQ Stockwatch
Telephone: (800) 537-3929
Fax: (301) 978-8510
Link to

OTC Bulletin Board (OTCBB)
Telephone: (203) 375-9609

Dow Jones Spot News Editors Offer Tips to Get Your News Noticed

November 5, 2012
- by Shawnee Cohn, Media Relations Specialist;
Joe Curro, Account Executive; and Alan Asarch, Manager, Licensing & Content Development, Business Wire/NY

Shawnee Cohn

A common question we get at Business Wire is, “What happens once my press release gets to the actual newsroom?” A key part of our service offerings is the delivery of your market-moving financial and earnings information that fulfills financial disclosure requirements.  Our patented NX Network ensures simultaneous delivery of this important press release content to the Associated Press, Dow Jones, Thomson Reuters, AFP, Bloomberg, and other leading financial and news organizations around the world, but what happens on the other end?

On a recent visit to the New York headquarters of Dow Jones, several Business Wire employees met with editors at the Dow Jones Newswires Spot News Desk. These editors are some of the first eyes on the real-time news, including press releases coming in through Business Wire and other wire services.  While some news releases may be automatically published over Dow Jones’ various products and services, they have the challenging responsibility of using their swift editorial discretion to determine what news makes their headlines.

The Spot News Desk team at Dow Jones Newswires shared some tips for public relations and communications professionals tasked with writing press releases, to help make sure the releases are seen:

Leave the “fluff” out of your release: At some of the busiest times of the day, such as market open and close, the Spot News Desk editors are hoping to publish several headlines per minute. If it takes longer than a few seconds to determine the market-moving information in the press release, your news is at risk of getting tossed, or at the very least, giving an editor a headache. Instead of forcing the newsroom to sift through your jargon, make the news evident from the very beginning, and try to write in a tone that can be easily understood by multiple audiences. Use bullet points at the beginning to identify salient details, and try to include a subheading that is relevant and would be able to stand on its own.

Timing is of the essence: For a lesser-known company, you’ll have more of a chance at catching an editor’s eye and attention during a slow time of the day. From 10AM-3PM, the influx of wire news tends to quiet down at Dow Jones. If you send out your press release at the market closing time of 4 PM, you risk a greater chance of having your announcement lost in the shuffle.

Use a wire service for your earnings news: Some companies opt out of using a wire service to distribute an earnings announcement and choose instead to post this news directly to their corporate website. For Spot News editors who are monitoring major announcements through a feed of wire news, it can seriously disrupt the flow of information if they are required to open a browser, navigate to a specific page, and/or copy and paste URLs in order to collect the data needed for a story. Needless to say, Spot News desk teams are incredibly busy, and if you can lend a helping hand by making your release easily accessible through a wire service, it is much appreciated.

Beginning its 52nd year, Business Wire continues to be trusted by public relations and communications professionals for the distribution and delivery of their press release announcements to the news and financial community.

For more information about Business Wire’s Public Relations and Investor Relations services, visit

DISCLOSURE DANGERS: Zero Margin for Error

November 1, 2012
by Neil Hershberg, Senior Vice President – Global Media, Business Wire
Neil Hershberg

Neil Hershberg, SVP – Global Media

It’s a regulatory reality that many IR professionals are reluctant to recognize: there are no “safety nets” when it comes to the hidden dangers of disclosure compliance.

Several blue-chip companies recently experienced the sensation of free-falling in the financial markets when their earnings results or other material news announcements were prematurely released, roiling the markets. These issuers learned the obvious: there are no “reset” buttons — or retractions — in today’s era of instant information.

Disclosure compliance is a high-wire act that most IR professionals would be wise to avoid. In pure business terms, the risk/reward ratio simply doesn’t make sense. The cost-savings are modest at best, and the potential consequences enormously damaging on multiple levels.

In other words, regulatory reporting is best left to the professionals. And one shouldn’t automatically bestow that distinction on all the new entrants in the commercial news wire industry, either.

Business Wire, which has been helping public companies fulfill their disclosure obligations for more than a half century, has the expertise, technology, infrastructure, network security safeguards, and staff to satisfy regulatory requirements in North America, as well as a dozen international jurisdictions.

The core service that we provide, in addition to the simultaneous, real-time distribution of price-sensitive information to market participants, can be succinctly summed up in three words: ASSURANCE AND INSURANCE.

Business Wire’s proprietary NX technology has been awarded patents in the United States, Canada, and the European Union for its simultaneous news delivery capabilities. When it comes to full and fair disclosure, as prescribed by the SEC’s Reg FD, Business Wire’s NX technology is the only news delivery platform that has been independently validated by patent authorities on two continents.

We also undergo a gauntlet of audits annually by the world’s leading accounting/management firms, all of whom try to find fault with our network security, editorial systems, and workflow procedures. And each year, Business Wire passes muster, which results in our being sanctioned by the world’s leading securities regulators, including the FSA (UK) and AMF (France). Business Wire earns the right to operate as a regulatory disclosure in these major financial markets by demonstrating its adherence to the world’s most demanding standards. Infrastructure matters.

So does experience. At the end of the day, it’s all about people and service. Business Wire is unique in the industry as we have close to 200 editors in 21 newsrooms worldwide. We don’t operate anonymous editorial processing stations, with their “bakery number” approach to client service. We know our clients — often on a first-name basis.

What this means, in layman’s terms, is that we have your back. In the world of business, that is a priceless benefit that goes beyond simple cost considerations.

Our seasoned editors, many of whom have decades of service, pick up scores of client errors each month, ranging from inconsistent numbers in earnings announcements, wrong dates, links that don’t work, etc. Having another set of eyes look at your release prior to distribution is truly invaluable, and could spare you and your company the angst of trying to rectify a major mistake.

The “insurance” that we provide clients — mitigating potential market mayhem — may well be the best value in the entire investor relations industry.

Some vendors with skeletal service offerings have aggressively been pushing “Do it Yourself” disclosure models.

One of the most vocal proponents of the DIY model, a leading web filing service, recently went down during peak filings. The outage clearly illustrates the danger of over reliance on technology without a suitable backup system in place. In other words, DIY = DOA.

In our view, DIY vendors are doing their clients a major disservice, given all that is at stake.

Clearly, disclosure compliance is a lot more intricate– and the miscues far more devastating — than may seem obvious.

We think that the “DIY” approach is most appropriate when limited to select home improvement projects.

However, when it comes to something as serious as disclosure compliance, the risks are many and the rewards few. The wiser course of action: go with the pros.


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