Edition, September 20, 2000, Page 1
OVERHAULS PR UNITS
Interpublic Group is set to streamline its Weber Group,
Shandwick International, and Golin/Harris International
units into a PR powerhouse with more than $300 million in
Larry Weber, chairman of Weber PR Worldwide, is set to make
the announcement this week. He could not be reached for
IPG, last year, made a similar consolidation move by merging
ad unit Lowe and Partners with Ammirati Puris Lintas to
form Lowe Lintas Worldwide.
That resulted in job cuts of about 900 staffers from the
combined 13,000 workforce.
IPG consolidation is seen as a way for the company to bolster
its faltering stock price, which hit a 52-week low at 34.78
on Sept. 18.
The New York Times cited IPG's stock as one of the "losers"
in the media category for the week of Sept. 11-15. It sank
6.4 percent to 35.56.
The ad giant has gone on an acquisition binge. It bought
56 companies last year, but would not identify them in SEC
Not included in that list is the $500 million in stock (and
assumption of debt of $180 million) that IPG paid for NFO
Worldwide this year.
Investors have panned IPG management for the lackluster
performance of the company's stock price in Internet chatrooms.
B-M PROMOTES CHINA'S CULTURE
Burson-Marsteller has registered the People's Republic of
China's Ministry of Culture as a client with the Justice
The Ministry of Culture and China's State Council Information
Office are sponsoring a $7 million art show that is touring
Critics say the show is nothing more than a tool to build
support for trade relations with China, and to deflect attacks
from human rights groups who are angry at China for a wide
range of issues.
WILLIAMS IS FENTON COMMS. PRESIDENT
Maggie Williams, who was chief of staff to First Lady Hillary
Clinton, is now president of Fenton Comms., the Washington,
recruitment enables David Fenton to focus on developing
the shop's Internet PR capability, and oversee the opening
of an office in San Francisco next year. FC has 45 staffers
in D.C., and 30 in New York.
KRUPNICK JOINS MS&L
Manning, Selvage & Lee has recruited financial PR pro
Elizabeth Krupnick as senior VP and director of its U.S.
Krupnick was senior VP-corporate affairs at Aetna Life,
and CCO at Prudential before being appointed president of
Dewe Rogerson in 1997.
BUYS STEINER SPORTS
The Omnicom Group has acquired Steiner Sports Marketing,
which has exclusive contracts with several pro athletes,
for about $25 million.
Steiner has exclusive collectibles contracts with New York
Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter and women's soccer star Mia
Julin, president of MGA Comms., Denver, at press time
was seeking signatures of ten >Assembly delegates of
PRSA in order to run as a write-in candidate for the PRSA
board as the director from the Western district. This would
be the fourth time in PRSA's 53-year history that official
candidates face opposition. Treasurer Joann Killeen,
who faces being dropped from the board, has not yet said
whether she will oppose Art Stevens for chair-elect. Deadline
for filing is Sept. 21. PRSA leaders for the third time
in four years want to break up the Oct. 21 annual Assembly
into a dozen or more "focus groups." A "town
hall" for open discussion at 4:30 p.m. is the last
item on the agenda of a meeting that starts at 8 a.m. Some
members of the Assembly say they may seek to overturn the
schedule... Deborah Harrington, PR manager of the
Financial Accounting Standards Board, Stamford, Conn., and
with FASB 22 years, joined Deloitte & Touche as national
director<%0> of PR. Bob Ferrante of The Cantor Concern
is doing a search on the $100K job at FASB ([email protected]).
Gary Gerard, who was national director of marketing
comms. at D&T, joined Stroock & Stroock & Lavan
in May... Martin Arnold, director of corporate communications
at Rayonier, which moved in June from Stamford, Conn., to
Jacksonville, Fla., has opened his own firm. He was a 33-year
veteran at Rayonier. About 30 of the 80 staffers moved with
the company. Other PR people leaving Rayonier were Barbara
Fisher, manager of corporate communications, and Rosa
Puza, corporate communications assistant. Jay A.
Frederickson, a 20-year veteran, continues as VP, corp.
Edition, September 20, 2000, Page 2
WAS TOO MUCH ON ATTACK
Senatorial candidate Rick Lazio spent too much time attacking
his opponent, Hillary Clinton, and not enough time addressing
the TV audience of millions, said Joyce Newman of The Newman
Group, New York, in analyzing last week's debate.
Newman has been counseling executives on public speaking
and making presentations for 25 years.
"Lazio did not know how to use the camera," she
said. "He spent too much time looking directly at Hillary
while she spent her time addressing the camera."
"Despite his unremitting attacks, Hillary remained
cool and unwavering," said Newman. "He didn't
know where to look, which diluted his message."
Newman also faulted the appearance of Lazio, saying his
hair looked "plastered down." He "definitely
needs a hair stylist," she added.
She said Lazio's attempt to get Clinton to sign a paper
was a "gross play" that backfired on him.
Newman also noted that Clinton smiled frequently while Lazio
had a grumpy facial expression. She felt Clinton looked
and acted "more senatorial" than Lazio.
KETCHUM WORKS TO SAVE FIRESTONE
Ketchum must quickly educate Bridgestone/Firestone executives
how badly the company's image has been hurt by the tread
separation problem on tires used by Ford Motor Co.'s Explorer,
say PR pros.
The survival of the 100-year-old Firestone brand is at stake.
The recall has dealt a "near fatal blow to the Firestone
brand," Yoichiro Kaizaki, president of Bridgestone,
told a press conference in Tokyo.
He said Bridgestone must tighten controls over its U.S.
operation, and apply Japanese manufacturing techniques here.
Misread public furor
B/F's Japanese managers admit they misread the tire debacle.
Masatoshi Ono, CEO of B/F, said the company "underestimated
the intensity of the situation," and was slow to respond
to the public's concern about driving with B/F tires.
USA Today reported last week how Americans have soured
on B/F. More than 77 percent of people polled by the paper
say they are less likely to buy Firestone tires because
of the recall.
The recall also has grabbed the attention of Americans.
Seventy-eight percent of respondents told USA Today they
followed the story closely.
The financial markets have taken a dim view of the B/F problem.
Shares of Bridgestone stock have fallen more than 45 percent
since the recall of 6.5 million tires.
Mark Schannon, head of Ketchum/D.C., said he will coordinate
the B/F work with Ketchum offices worldwide. The firm may
also have "one or two executives on the ground"
at B/F offices in Nashville, he added.
ALLY ARRESTED IN BRIBE BUST
Federal prosecutors have charged Paul Adler, who is the
Democratic Party chairman in Rockland County, N.Y., with
taking bribes and fraud in connection with business dealings
Adler, 42, who is a fund raiser for Hillary Clinton, the
Democratic Senate candidate for New York, was arrested with
Haverstraw town attorney Sean Purdy on separate federal
complaints of alleged misuse of their public offices and
stealing from taxpayers.
Adler was released without bail. His lawyer, Murray Richman,
called the charges an "absurd" attack.
Adler, who also is a leader in pro-Israel and Jewish charities
and causes, was charged with eight federal counts involving
accusations of fraud, extortion, bribery, mail fraud and
He is accused of using his power as party boss in three
real estate deals-including the controversial Palisades
Center mall-to enrich himself by $375,000 at the expense
Purdy has admitted to the F.B.I. that he took at least $25,000
in bribes from Israel Herskowitz and his two sons, who were
Adler is also accused of not reporting to the Rockland Board
of Ethics that he was paid $135,000 over three years by
the Pyramid Cos. for PR work and hiding the fees through
a non-active corporation, Turnpike Management, owned by
GAO SAYS MARKETERS TARGET KIDS
"In-school marketing has become a growing industry,"
according to a report issued recently by the General Accounting
"Some marketing professionals are increasingly targeting
children in schools, companies are becoming known for their
success in negotiating contracts between school districts
and beverage companies, and both educators and corporate
managers are attending conferences to learn how to increase
revenue from in-school marketing for their schools and companies,"
the report said.
Many school districts have signed exclusivity contracts
with Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, in which vending machines are
placed in hallways and serve as billboards for their brands.
Coke's contract in Madison, Wisc., was recently voted down
for renewal (NL, 9/13).
Companies like Zap Me offer schools free computers with
screens that include flashing ads.
The GAO report cites textbook covers distributed by Clairol,
Ralph Lauren, Reebok and Philip Morris with company names
and logos fully displayed.
With Gambling," which had been heard on New York's
WOR-AM since 1925, went off the air Sept. 11 because it
was not attracting younger listeners.
Several thousand fans of the show have protested the move
with calls to the station, and four advertisers told John
R. Gambling, the show's last host, they would stop buying
time on the station.
Edition, September 20, 2000, Page 3
NEWSOURCE TO PROVIDE BIZ NEWS
which goes to more than 650 stations in the U.S., is starting
a new financial news service based at the New York Stock
The newsfeed service also is opening bureaus next month
in Seattle and Denver. They will give Newsource, which is
headquartered in Atlanta, a total of six bureaus staffed
by 11 correspondents.
Lillian Kim, currently with KCRA-TV, Sacramento, was named
Seattle correspondent, and Gina London will relocate from
Atlanta to Denver.
CNN Newsource is also adding people and resources in its
Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C., bureaus.
CNN will cover Wall Street 13 hours a day through a new
service called CNN Marketsource, which is based at the NYSE.
Jane King, formerly of WPVI-TV Philadelphia, and Claire
Leka, formerly of Reuters TV, will serve as Marketsource
s two correspondents. They will give stations live updates
from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. and will do custom shots for an extra
CNN Newsource, which is known for its hard news coverage,
will also produce more features and news analysis by identifying
important news stories and developing "a theme of the
week" around them. Such themes will be identified ahead
of time so stations can promote them.
The new effort comes as CBS, ABC and Fox have formed a joint-venture
newsfeed service for their affiliates called NNS.
MARKETWATCH MAKES PRINT DEBUT
made its print debut on Sept. 11 as the primary business
news provider to The Daily News Express, the new
evening edition of The New York Daily News.
The DNE s four-page business section contains CBS MarketWatch.com's
breaking market news, as well as personal finance, IPO and
mutual fund coverage, and many of the site s weekly columns,
including Thom Calandra s "StockWatch," Tom Kilgore
s "market Map," Bambi Francisco s "Net Sense,"
Mike Tarsala s "Tech Watch," Mike Molinski s "FundWatch,"
and Jon Friedman s "Media Web," along with commentary
from Irwin Kellner and Marshall Loeb.
DNE is distributed free at bus, subway and train stations
in Manhattan and downtown Brooklyn.
Peter Larsen has transferred from London to the New
York bureau of The Financial Times to cover mergers
Matt Heimer has joined Smart Money to cover
the consumer electronics beat, replacing Amy Gunderson,
Dr. Sean Kenniff, a "Survivor" show participant,
has joined "Extra" as its new medical correspondent.
Cyrus Afzali, previously managing editor of Internetnews.com,
has joined Makovsky & Co. His replacement is Bob Liu.
Larry Martz has succeeded Roy Rowan as president
of the Overseas Press Club in New York.
Lavinel Savu, previously at O, The Oprah Magazine,
where he was founding managing editor of the startup title,
has joined In Style as editorial manager.
Carrie Tuhy, previously acting managing editor for
Time Inc.'s new lifestyle magazine since May, was
named managing editor of Real Simple.
TRIB CO. TO OPEN CUBA BUREAU
Tribune Co., Chicago, will open one of the first U.S. newspaper
bureaus in Cuba since the 1960s.
The publisher was informed by Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe
Perez Roque that the Cuban government had approved the opening
of the bureau.
The Tribune company publishes 11 newspapers, including The
Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Newsday, The Baltimore
Sun, Sun-Sentinel in Florida, The Orlando Sentinel, The
Hartford Courant, The Morning Call, based in Allentown,
Pa., and The (Stamford) Advocate and Greenwich (Conn.) Time.
Details of the bureau, including who will staff it and when
it will open, remain to be determined.
The American Spectator, a political magazine
that was started 33 years ago by Emmett Tyrell Jr., has
been acquired by Gilder Publishing. GP is headed by George
Gilder, a former economist, who publishes the 60,000-circulation
Gilder Technology Report, which frequently boosts high-tech
Richard Vigilante, a senior executive with GP, said the
new Spectator will focus on technology issues instead of
just covering politicians and politics.
The magazine s circulation, which rose to 300,000 while
it was covering the sexual allegations against President
Clinton, has dropped to 100,000.
Late show host David Letterman created the "Top
10 Signs The New York Times Is Slipping" after
the newspaper ran a correction in which it said a front
page article on Aug. 19 about the sighting of open water
at the North Pole had "misstated the normal conditions
of the sea ice there."
"The lack of ice at the pole is not necessarily related
to global warming," the Times stated in the correction,
which ran Aug. 29. "A clear spot has probably opened
at the pole before, scientists say, because about 10% of
the Arctic Ocean is clear of ice in a typical summer."
Letterman said the Times should change its slogan from "All
The News That s Fit to Print" to "Stuff We Heard
From a Guy Who Says His Friend Heard About It." Post
a notice on the sports page that "All scores are approximate."
A spokeswoman for the paper said "The Times has always
believed in correcting its errors as promptly as we learn
about them. That s one of the top 10 reasons why we ve been
around for nearly 150 years."
(Media news continued on next page)
Edition, September 20, 2000, Page 4
REPORTER ON INSURANCE BEAT
Oster, who is in The Wall Street Journal's Atlanta
bureau, has been assigned to cover the life and property
casualty insurance beat.
The beat had been handled in New York for two years by Deborah
Lohse, who joined The San Jose Mercury News on Aug. 7 as
a marketing reporter.
Leslie Scism, a New York-based "Heard on the Street"
editor, will continue to oversee the insurance beat on an
Oster, who joined the Journal four months ago, said he spent
about three years at Smart Money magazine in New
York, where he mainly covered mutual funds. He got the magazine
to transfer him to Atlanta so he could be closer to his
girlfriend, whom he recently married.
Oster, who just started covering the beat on Sept. 11, said
he finds PR people are "helpful" and welcomes
getting phone calls and E-mail from them. His direct number
is 404/865-4324; E-mail [email protected].
REPORTER'S 'NORMAL' DAY IS HECTIC
Claudia Deutsch, a veteran financial news reporter for The
New York Times, said a normal work day for her is when
"all hell breaks loose with a breaking news story."
Deutsch described her beat as "basic industries, defined
by me as, if EPA or OSHA went after them in the 70s,
they re mine." Her description appeared in a new feature
in the New York Financial Writers Assn.'s August newsletter,
which was edited by Susan Rodetis.
Deutsch, who gets to her desk in the newsroom at around
10:15 a.m, said she starts "hitting the phones"
when the news desk asks for 650 words on something big that
has just happened. She makes "calls to the company,
calls to the competitors, calls to security analysts and
Her deadline is usually 5 or 5:30 p.m. "I normally
beat it by an hour or so," said Deutsch, who at that
point switches to "hurry-up-and-wait; wait for the
backfield and copy desk to read the story and ask their
questions, then hustle on out."
The veteran reporter said it is "quite different"
when there is no breaking news. "That s when I have
coffee with visiting news sources, catch up on reading,
report features, set up interviews (and plane tickets and
hotel reservations) for stories out of town. "It s
also when phone calls get returned and editors cajole me
into writing features for their sections."
In her spare time, Deutsch plays tennis and squash, and
is an "avid theater-goer."
PLACEMENT TIPS ______________________
American Banker has appointed several new editors
and reporters recently. Marc Hochstein was promoted to deputy
editor of the mortgage section; Lisa Fickenscher was upped
to deputy editor, with responsibility for credit card coverage;
Jennifer Bloom was elevated to senior editor, overseeing
coverage of both technology and credit cards, and Stephen
Kleege has taken on new responsibilities as senior editor
of AB's investment products coverage.
Veronica Agosta joined AB's New York office to cover community
banks, and David Reich-Hale, previously at National Underwriter,
also joined the New York office to cover insurance products
The New York Press Club is looking for companies
and/or organizations to donate items for a "goody bag"
to be distributed at its Eighth Annual Conference on Journalism
to be held Nov. 11 at the Columbia Univ. school of journalism.
The conference is attended by reporters, editors, producers,
and other members of the media.
Debra Caruso of DJC Comms., who is the club's spokesperson,
can provide more information at 212/227-7793; [email protected].
has launched Space Illustrated as a bimonthly
consumer magazine, with an initial print run of 150,000
The magazine, which is edited by Andrew Chaikin ([email protected]),
who is executive editor of the website, will feature a mix
of photography, news, features and original science fiction
Lou Dobbs, the former managing editor of CNN s "Moneyline,"
who started Space.com, has acquired London-based Space
Business International, a quarterly trade publication.
Yoga Journal, which was relaunched last January
by John Abbott, a former investment banker for Citicorp,
is projecting circulation will reach 200,000 by first quarter
A survey conducted by Roper Starch Worldwide found over
18 million Americans practiced yoga an average of one to
two times per week in 1998.
The magazine, whose readership is composed of 80% women,
has begun covering fashion and finance, and will name Christy
Turlington as its new editor-at-large at the 25th Anniversary
Yoga Journal Conference that will be held Sept. 20 in New
Sidewalk Santa, a copyrighted program run by the
Volunteers of America, is seeking corporate sponsors and
celebrities for this year s annual Food and Hunger campaign
that runs from Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve.
Companies and celebrities can benefit from TV, radio and
print coverage by aligning their corporate name with Sidewalk
Santa, according to Amster-Young PR, New York, which is
again handling PR for the campaign.
Dorothy Kellogg is available to provide more information
about the sponsorship opportunities at 212/496-4346.
Edition, September 20, 2000, Page 7
REBUTS PR CHARGE
Schering-Plough openly provides "seed money" to
many non-profit groups supporting various disease categories,
said Bob Consalvo, its director of external communications.
no secrecy or deception involved, he added.
He made those remarks in response to a front-page story
in the Sept. 12 Washington Post that accused S-P
of running an "astroturf" campaign to educate
people about the dangers of hepatitis C.
The company uses Shandwick International to help organize
coalitions that have called hepatitis C the "silent
Hepatitis groups in 11 states, said the Post, "are
not spontaneous gatherings of concerned citizens. They are
instead a key part of a carefully orchestrated marketing
campaign funded by Schering-Plough to sell its primary therapy
for hepatitis C, Rebetron, which costs $18,000 a year."
Reaching out to potential patient groups is a standard operating
practice in pharmaceutical company PR, according to Consalvo.
Shandwick helps S-P in that outreach effort.
Consalvo said materials used by hepatitis coalitions carry
notices that they were created with money from S-P.
They are informational kits about hepatitis, said Consalvo,
and do not promote Rebetron as a preferred treatment.
S-P is one of three drug companies, according to Consalvo,
that markets a treatment for hepatitis C.
We don't run groups'
Consalvo made it clear that the coalitions are independent
of S-P. "We don't run the groups," he said.
The company, however, plays a "logistical" role
in helping to arrange these "informal meetings"
of people interested in finding out information about hepatitis
C, which affects four million Americans a year.
Coalition members belong to public health groups, veteran
associations, unions, and other community organizations.
goal, explained Consalvo, is to get coalitions up and running,
and then move on to other things.
Shandwick creates hepatitis materials and provides scripts
for operators at 800- hotlines used by various hepatitis
The firm has put together a database of potential coalition
volunteers, and trains hepatitis patients how to deal with
Shandwick deputy chairman Don Riegle, who was Michigan's
Senator, is co-chairman of that state's hepatitis coalition.
The Post reported that Riegle pitched the Detroit News
a story on hepatitis without informing the reporter that
he was employed by Shandwick.
That identification wasn't necessary, according to Riegle,
because he was there on his own behalf.
"This is a medical issue I happen to believe in,"
Nancy Longley, senior VP at Shandwick, said S-P's hepatitis
outreach is a valid PR effort to raise awareness of a very
important health issue, she said.
S-P's coalition work, said Consalvo, is well within current
Food and Drug Administration guidelines about the promotion
of prescription drugs.
N.Y. TIMES PUTS BUSINESS ON PAGE 1
The New York Times is putting more economic and business
news on the front page, according to an article in the September
issue of Across the Board, the Conference Board's
"Once considered too dull for words, business and financial
news is jostling with sex, scandal and politics for front
page prominence," says Randall Poe, author of the article.
A driving force is "a record-breaking economic boom
and stock market" and Internet fever.
Poe notes that nearly half of all American households now
own stock and one in three owns mutual funds, up from one
in 18 in 1980. Rising competition from a galaxy of other
media are also spurring increased business coverage.
He cites a range of business-focused stories that have made
recent front pages at the Times and describes the Times'
ritualized page one meetings where "the best stories
are culled from the rest."
MAGS RAP BUSH'S REMARK
The remark Gov. George Bush made about a New York Times
reporter Sept. 4 (calling him "a major league a-hole")
carries major implications, said articles in Sept. 18 Time
and The New Yorker. Newsweek put less weight
on the remark, saying it was just "a glimpse of Bush's
less appealing frat-boy side."
Running mate Dick Cheney was also caught on the live mike
agreeing with the remark about the NYT's Adam Clymer.
The New Yorker found it doubly damaging to Bush because
he was smiling and waving to a crowd, pretending to be friendly
when he was actually being very hostile.
Time's Margaret Carlson used the remark as the jumping point
for a lengthy analysis of the Bush and Al Gore attitudes
to the press.
"Bush got caught doing publicly what he usually does
privately," wrote Carlson. She said the Bush charm
with reporters vanishes when tough questions are asked and
that the Bush team keeps score on good and bad mentions.
W. was the "loyalty enforcer" in the 1988 campaign
for his father and if a reporter was not loyal, "you
fell off the list for interviews, horseshoes and movies
in the family quarters." Gore is not "chummy"
but he's not "petty," either, wrote Carlson.
She also faulted Bush for only being sorry that he was overheard
and not for being vindictive.
Bush is well known for his salty language. Columnist Bill
Buckley devoted a column to this subject last year, urging
Bush to stop his frequent use of the "f" word.
Edition, September 20, 2000, Page 8
collection of about 150 cliches commonly found in presentation
and corporate writing is at www.dack.com,
an irreverent website that is "the 2 cents of a guy
living in Minneapolis." The list has such terms as
"grow," "incubate," "integrate,"
"strategic," "bricks-and-clicks," "global,"
"portals," and "vortals." The list can
also be used by those writing proposals who want to sound
very "state-of-the-art." One person wrote Dack
he was thinking of suing Dack on the basis of "copyright
infringement of my last 12 RFPs." Dack blasts the "branding
mania," including "those little stickers on every
piece of fruit I buy"... the insider selling at
Omnicom and Interpublic has hit a raw nerve among investors,
who have long heard nothing but good news from these two
companies. As noted in the Aug. 30 NL, OMC insiders since
last September have sold ten times as much stock as they
acquired and insiders at IPG have sold three times as much.
Said one posting on Yahoo!: "When you see insiders
selling like these are, it s time to get out." Another
wondered if the executives are "trading on inside info."
IPG is currently near its 52-week low, having lost about
$5 billion of its $17B market capitalization. The lower
stock prices make it very costly and even too costly for
the conglomerates to buy other companies. It would be hard
for the ad agency execs to say they are "diversifying
their portfolios" since OMC and IPG are practically
mutual funds of hundreds of ad/PR/production firms serving
hundreds of the biggest companies in all industries...
the "instant poll" on the O'Dwyer website asking
whether or not APR should be required for PRSA offices is
now running three-to-one against continued mandatory APR...
reports are that the PRSA board censured a member who also
became a fellow this year. There s no way to check this
out since all ethics board matters are confidential. But
insiders are asking, "What s the use of a private censure?"
A censure is supposed to be public, we agree, but this is
just another instance of illogic at PRSA. "Universal"
APR is anything but universal and an "Assembly"
meets once a year for the purpose of assembling, not being
broken up (PRSA leaders are again breaking up the Assembly
into "focus groups" at this year s conference)...
the argument over what constitutes an "open" director
of PRSA and a "district" director is at the
heart of Jeff Julin s candidacy for the board (page one).
Julin reportedly tried three times to be district director
and each time was blocked. This year he thought it was available
because David Simon had been serving as "open"
director, meaning not tied to any district since it would
be unfair for one district to have two representatives.
It s similar to states having Representatives for its districts
and Senators who represent the whole state. The Representatives
cannot switch to Senator or vice versa... Art Stevens,
CEO of Publicis Dialog/New York, while declining to answer
any questions from the press about his candidacy for chair-elect
of PRSA, has sent Assembly delegates a two-page letter
on Publicis stationery pointing out that Publicis is the
fifth largest ad/marketing communications firm in the world
and describing his qualifications. He says the management
of Publicis "fully supports my nomination." Stevens
says he has "run a profitable organization with revenues
the size of PRSA s." However, when Stevens sold Lobsenz-Stevens
to Publicis last year, he had reported revenues of $4.6
million for L-S in 1998, considerably lower than PRSA s
$7.8M volume in 1999. Stevens says he will give "high
priority to making new generations of PRSA members understand
the value of accreditation." The APR program is opposed
by the great bulk of PRSA s members, with virtually all
of the eligibles ignoring the APR test each time it s given.
The small group of APRs who control PRSA have cost the general
membership $2,005,760 in the past ten years for a test that
is generally reviled in the business world and especially
in New York. The opponents of APR are powerless since only
the APRs can vote at PRSA. Stevens, although asked several
times by this NL last year to renounce the board s year-long
boycott against the O Dwyer publications, refused to do
so, saying his loyalties were with the board.
September is "Be Kind to Editors and Writers Month,"
an observance started in 1984 by Lonestar Publications
of Humor, San Antonio. Purposes of the month are for editors
and writers to show courtesy to each other and to enhance
awareness of the importance of writing and editing. Journalism
is the institution (although imperfect, itself) that seeks
to keep all the other institutions on the up-and-up.
James Cramer, co-founder of TheStreet.com,
argues in the Sept. 11 New York that Democrats are better
than Republicans for the economy because the former
keep inflation and interest down and balance the budget,
while the latter have policies that cause budget deficits
and interest rates to rise. Al Gore has proposed a $500
billion tax cut while George Bush has proposed cuts totaling
$1.3 billion. The government, argues Cramer, winds up financing
the debt with bonds rather than tax dollars. If consumer
spending rises and the budget surplus turns into a deficit,
the Fed s Alan Greenspan will boost interest rates and create
"the first real competition for stocks since this bull
market began," says Cramer.