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PR – not the industry from hell!

March 9, 2009

Already some in the PR community are having a little laugh at the expense of Burson-Marstellar and the kicking they got on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow show. I don’t think that there’s any laughing to be done here – this is (yet another) black eye delivered to the public relations industry.

I know many, many good people (incl. at BM) who work in this industry – many are actually ex-journalists (though they argue they’ll always be journalists) – it’s too easy a trick to belittle thousands of good people by attacking a corporate brand.

Interestingly, all you need to do is search on the terms “MSNBC scandal” or “NBC scandal” and there’s enough fodder there to keep anyone entertained for hours.

Anyway, enuff of that – the key point here is that the entire PR industry needs to (as it has always done) keep working on its reputation and perception as an industry. For an industry based on building trust and relationships between stakeholders and institutions, we’ve really been pretty piss poor at doing it ourselves – esp. when it comes to our friends in the media…

Update: Penn responds. However, he/we knew the ‘internal memo’ would leak into the public realm, yet the response to media interviews is ‘no comment.’ arrghh??!?!

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