A few years ago, I found myself on the giant playground known as the Google “campus” in Mountain View, Calif., speaking to a small group of Google employees about, among other things, originality. I tried to make what I thought was a pretty unoriginal point. The culture, I suggested, rewarded successful copying and ignored or even denounced originality. Some examples: If a talking cat gets a million page views on YouTube, then within days there will be a million talking cats, dogs, ferrets, etc.
I have a confession to make. For years, I earned a living—or a sort of living—writing negative book reviews. Panning a book wasn’t all I did, and it wasn’t even most of what I did, but the pans were what got the attention. Yet when I think of the prospect of sharpening my knife and setting to work on another negative review, distaste for the enterprise makes me listless. The truth is that I intend never to write a negative book review again.
When the Norwegian crime writer Jo Nesbø was in his early teens, he had a panic attack. The sun had set in Molde, the small city on Norway’s west coast where he grew up, and the apartment in which he lived with his parents and two brothers was silent. Thoughts of death descended on him, visions of being trapped in a coffin under the earth. He ran to his father, Per, woke him from a nap, and asked him what happens when you die. “Do you really want to know?” his father asked. The boy insisted.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Musk AND Zuckerberg or Musk + Zuckerberg.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used). For example, results will contain either cake or cookie by searching cake OR cookie or cake,cookie
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".