Should bloggers be allowed to talk to IROs?

Dominic Jones provides an excellent discussion about the influence of bloggers on investor relations and the way that some investor relations officers seem to lack understanding how much influence blogs (especially financial blogs) have in stock purchase decisions.

Needless to say, that the influence of blogs is only going to increase as the work load of financial analysts increases leaving them less time to do research and try to understand the company and the industry. It is not a surprise then that these very analysts and professional investors use blogs to acquire information to substitute their own research.

So, what Dominic concludes is this: "The time has come for investor relations departments to open up their earnings calls to finance bloggers." What I conclude is as an educator I must teach my students to deal with bloggers in the controlled environment of the conference call as well as uncontrolled environment of blogs, discussion boards, and chat rooms. Investor relations education must prepare students to track issues in the blogosphere, and be able to measure and manage the discussion on relevant topics.

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