Earlier this week DaimlerChrysler introduced The Firehouse, a blog authored by company executives and created as a continuing conversation with professional journalists between periods of typical briefings such as auto shows.
DaimlerChrysler has a tradition of turning an old Detroit firehouse, Chrysler Firehouse, into a press-only gathering spot every year during the North American International Auto Show. DaimlerChrysler is expanding this communication event through weblogs and other tools to answer questions year-round in a semi-public forum. I contacted Jason Vines, DaimlerChrysler’s Vice President of Communications, and was told that The Firehouse is a place for reporters to relax and mingle, ask tough questions, and both sides are candor with each other about products and industry developments.
While some people might be upset over DaimlerChrysler admitting only members of “a known and established media organization” I think they are just testing the waters of blogs and collaborative media and will eventually have public corporate blogs to discuss many different topics. The communications team has been pretty open so far, and I am glad they are taking a look at the blogging space and putting their top executives out there.