It’s a fair question. After all, social media is not a new phenomenon. After nearly 20 years, online engagement is not something you can describe as ‘new’ and, after a decade of rapid development, the ins and outs of social media engagement have been scruitinised extensively across the web.

Equally, the relationship between public relations and social media has been examined in detail, with countless popular and academic blogs, forums, communities and networks all contributing to the discussion.

So where does this social media space sit among all the others?

The Oceania Centre for Social Media aims to be a place of understanding. Where those involved in the discussion – geographically or otherwise – can contribute research, thinking and questions on the intersection of public relations and the many digital channels we use in our function of building and sustaining relationships.

Those initiating the project are based in New Zealand and the hope is that this space in particular will harness contributions from those in our region who may have been reluctant to enter the discussion, but who may have something to observe or contribute.

Research papers will be published periodically and anyone wishing to submit a paper for publication here should let us know.

So let the discussion begin.