Edition, August 7, 2002, Page 1
H-P LOOKS TO 'RATIONALIZE'
Hewlett-Packard is looking
to rationalize its PR spending in the aftermath of its acquisition
of Compaq Computer, according to Tim Marklein, H-P's director
of corporate media relations.
The high-tech giant has
sent out an RFP to a "short list of top industry PR
firms," said Marklein, who recently joined H-P from
Applied Communications. The goal is to "improve the
quality, speed and competitiveness of H-P's global PR effort."
Marklein added that the
consolidation effort is also designed to reduce PR spending
by increasing efficiencies and eliminating redundancies.
Porter Novelli is H-P's
lead agency. Edelman PR Worldwide, Golin/Harris International,
Applied, Publicis Dialog and The Hoffman Agency are also
Hill and Knowlton is
Compaq's PR firm.
REDPOINT ACES OGILVY FOR LOEWS
Redpoint Marketing PR beat Ogilvy PR Worldwide for a national
brand awareness program for Loews Hotels, Vickie Feldman
de Falco, co-founder of the start-up firm, told this NL.
Susan Magrino Agency, M. Silver Assocs. and PR 21, which
is owned by Daniel J. Edelman Inc., also pitched.
DeFalco, who was KWE president, started the firm with
Christina Miranda, who was senior VP at KWE. She has handled
clients such as Visa USA, Hyatt Resorts, Royal Caribbean
International, and the American Society of Travel Agents.
Emily Kanders, Loews director of PR, cited the pair's
ten-year PR partnership serving hospitality clients as one
of the reasons for picking RMPR.
O'BRIEN JOINS GCI
Robinson Lerer & Montgomery's Jim O'Brien is now executive
VP and director of GCI Group's New York corporate practice.
"I wanted to work in a broader field," O'Brien
told this NL about why he joined the Grey Global unit. O'Brien,
as senior VP at RL&M, handled image campaigns, crisis
management, mergers/acquisitions and IR for clients, such
He spent a decade at Hill and Knowlton, dealing with "special
situations" (restructurings, white collar crime, litigation
support and earnings restatements).
He also worked for Manning, Selvage & Lee (Delta Air
Lines, Eastern Chemical and Principal Financial Group) and
ADELPHIA TAPS RL&M FOR
Adelphia Communications is using Robinson Lerer &
Montgomery, a Young & Rubicam unit, for crisis PR in
the aftermath of its June 26 Chapter 11 filing and arrest
of former founder 77-year-old John Rigas and sons for allegedly
using the company as their personal piggybanks.
RL&M's mission is to reassure cable subscribers that
the company has a future once its reorganization is completed.
Erland Kailbourne, Adelphia's chairman and interim CEO,
is the star of an ad campaign urging cable subscribers to
"stick with us." His message is that Coudersport,
Pa.-based Adelphia has "recently embarked on a reorganization
effort to rebuild the company and restore its integrity."
The SEC filed a suit in U.S. District Court for the Southern
District of NY on July 24 against Adelphia; Rigas and sons
Timothy (Adelphia's CFO), Michael (executive VP) and James
(executive VP); James Brown (VP) and Michael Mulcahey charging
them with fraudulently excluding $2.3 billion in debt from
the company's balance sheet.
SAUDI ARABIA SPENT $2.7M
Burson-Marsteller has received $2.7 million in fees/expenses
from Saudi Arabia for placing ads pitching the Kingdom as
a staunch U.S. ally in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks.
Its Marsteller Advertising unit placed the ads on Sept.
16 and 19. B-M was officially terminated by the Saudis on
Nov. 11, according to federal documents.
The PR firm also retained Public Opinions Strategies,
a polling outfit, on behalf of the Saudis, and made a $25,000
contribution to the Mosaic Foundation.
The Foundation, founded in 1998 by the spouses of the
17 Arab Ambassadors in Washington, D.C., contributed on
Oct. 6 to the Washington Family Relief Fund set up by Riggs
Bank for families of 9/11 victims.
The group is chaired by Princess Haifa Al-Faisal, the
wife of Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Prince Bandar bin Sultan
Fifteen of the 19 Sept. 11 murderers were Saudis.
has joined Weber Shandwick as a senior consultant in its
biotechnology practice. She had headed Forester Biotech,
and serves on the board of the Biotechnology Industry Org.
Queen Elizabeth will make her an Officer of the Order of
the British Empire later this year. Taunton-Rigby will work
out of the IPG units Cambridge, Mass., office.
Edition, August 7, 2002, Page 2
HERSHEY TRUST HIRES RKSC
The Hershey Trust Co.
is using issues management firm Robinson Kelly Strategic
Communications to handle media inquiries dealing with its
blockbuster decision to explore the sale of its Hershey
Foods Corp. holdings, Rick Kelly told this NL. The move
by the Milton Hershey School Trust, which owns 77 percent
of the voting power in HFC, has sent shock waves through
the company town known as the "sweetest place on Earth."
Kelly, whose firm is
based in Harrisburg, Pa., has been "camped out"
at the Trust's headquarters since the Wall Street Journal
broke the story on July 25. He said he is coordinating communications
activities with HTC's "merger and acquisition advisors."
Morgan Stanley and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
are the Trust's financial and legal advisors.
HFC CEO Richard Lenny,
who has spearheaded a cost-cutting drive, said the chocolate
company prefers to remain independent. John Long, VP-corporate
communications at HFC, has not yet been reached.
SURFERS MORE WILLING TO PAY
More than 12.4 million consumers are paying for online
content, up from seven million in the first-quarter of 2001,
according to a survey by the Online Publishers Assn.
Real Networks, a distributor of audio and video material,
derives the most revenue, followed by Wall Street Journal
Online, according to the findings of the group which includes
New York Times Digital, Wall Street Journal Online, MSNBC.com,
ESPN.com and CBS Marketwatch.
In general, the survey found that of the 1,700 sites charging
for content, the 100 with the most revenue drew 97% of all
revenue and the top 50 sites drew 85% of the revenue. The
survey did not include payments made to pornography sites.
Not surprisingly, the survey shows business and financial
news sites got the biggest chunk of the spending, racking
up $214.3 million in revenue in 2001 from selling content,
mainly through monthly and annual subscriptions.
Several media companies have recently introduced for-pay
packages on their websites. ABC.com said on July 31 that
it will begin charging $4.95 per month for "ABC News
On Demand," which includes news clips and day-after
replays of "World News Tonight" and "Nightline,"
as well as 30 days of the programs' archives. CNN.com began
charging for access to video on its site earlier this year.
The Wall Street Journal, which has 650,000 subscribers,
dominates subscription revenue in the online financial category.
Sites Will Charge by `04
Clare Hart, CEO of Factiva, believes consumers will start
paying for all online media content by 2004.
Since the dot-com boom collapsed, it has become increasingly
clear to publishers that online advertising is not going
to supply sufficient revenue.
KLORES HOSTS NFL'S TAILGATE
Dan Klores Communications is coordinating publicity for
the National Football League's "world's largest tailgate
party" set for Times Square on Sept. 5, according to
Brian McCarthy, an NFL spokesperson.
The event, which headlines the band Bon Jovi, is set to
begin five hours before the New York Giants open their season
against the San Francisco 49ers in the League's first Thursday
McCarthy said the NFL is "tapping" into DKC's
expertise, and plans to announce more acts for the Party
that is designed to show support for NYC as the Sept. 11
anniversary of the terror attacks draws near.
Dan Klores, DKC partner Chris Widmaier, and senior VP
Nathalie Moar are handling the event for the PR firm.
PR CALLED TO PITCH PROPAGANDA
U.S. propaganda overseas efforts will get a "far
more bang for the buck if there is a much expanded role
for the private sector," according to a critique of
the government's "public diplomacy" efforts prepared
by the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.
While the Council wants the State Dept. budget for propaganda
dramatically increased, it notes that U.S. government officials
are somewhat limited in communicating with non-governmental
Federal officials, notes the Report, must observe "diplomatic
protocols in communicating with their counterparts,"
while "independent messengers can be more fluid in
their ability to target and engage varied audiences."
The Council believes the use of a PR firm intermediary
could provide Uncle Sam a "heat shield" that could
be useful "when tackling controversial issues that
might have negative political or diplomatic repercussions."
The Council also feels that private messengers "can
engage in controversial critiques and debates that the U.S.
Government might often shrink from for fear of political
PR members of the Council's Independent Task Force, which
authored the Report, include Kathy Bloomgarden, CEO of Ruder
Finn Inc.; Jack Leslie, Weber Shandwick chairman; Scott
Miller, founder of Sawyer/Miller Group; Richard Plepler,
executive VP-corporate communications at Home Box Office;
Nancy Nielsen, senior director-domestic and international
alliances at Pfizer and former VP-corporate communications
at the New York Times Co., and Jill Schuker, senior VP at
The Kamber Group.
APCO, GLOBAL COMMS. GET BOLIVIA
Bolivia's Ministry of Foreign Trade and Investment has
given a nine-month promotion contract to Grey Global's APCO
unit, Global Communicators and BG Consulting.
The contract is worth $300K, and is targeted at the American
timber and textile companies.
Barry Schumacher, APCO senior VP, Jim Harff, GC's chairman
and Ruder Finn alumnus, and Luis Soto of BG handle the account.
Edition, August 7, 2002, Page 3
EYES LUXURY MARKET
Magazine will make its debut as a lifestyle magazine
when it is delivered as a weekly insert in the Friday editions
of some 70 daily newspapers on Oct. 18.
who was launch editor of Time Inc.'s Real Simple
magazine, is working as an editorial consultant for Cachet,
and Susan Slesin, who was editor-in-chief of the now-defunct
Homestyle magazine, is managing editor.
which will be distributed by papers with an audited circulation,
will start with a guaranteed rate base of 1 million, according
to Peter Hagan, a former investment banker with no previous
publishing experience, who is chairman/CEO of the New York-based
publication. CM is headquartered at Union sq. West (212/675-6699).
Top 25 Markets
Cachet, which will have no urban distribution, will
be targeted at newspaper readers in wealthy suburbs that
surround the top 25 Designated Market Areas (DMA), which
include Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C.,
Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco
not every newspaper customer will get Cachet. Instead,
it will be delivered to those who are deemed to have high
end demographics, Hagan said.
will distribute Cachet to its readers on Long Island,
but the magazine will have no distribution in Westchester
County, N.Y., which is one of the most affluent suburbs
in the U.S.
In New Jersey,
The Bergen Record may distribute Cachet as
an insert in its string of weekly community papers, said
Hagan, who resides in Bernardsville, N.J.
of its attempt to attract luxury advertisers, Cachet
will be printed on high grade paper in a 9 x 10 7/8 inch
size. Parade and USA Weekend are tabloid-size
and printed on newsprint.
interviews conducted after the three test issues were published
found readers "extremely receptive" to the magazine's
93% of the respondents in the last survey indicated they
were looking forward to reading the next issue, said Hagan.
Banahan, who was the first ad director of Martha Stewart
Living magazine, is Cachet's president/publisher.
Wyland and Slesin are working out of a different building,
but he declined to give their address or phone number.
Publishers Weekly's new offices are located at 360
Park ave. South, New York, NY 10010. 646/746-6400; fax:
RADIO SHOW WILL
COVER BUSINESS NEWS
Street Journal Radio Network will start a nationally syndicated
business news show in late September. The hour-long program,
called "The Wall Street Journal This Morning,"
will air from the company's new broadcast facilities that
were built at Dow Jones' production plant in Princeton,
will offer content from each day's Wall Street Journal,
Wall Street Journal Online, the Dow Jones Newswires, and
The Wall Street Journal Sunday.
will complement the business news updates heard throughout
the day on more than 180 affiliates of the Wall Street Journal
will preview the Journal's take on what to watch for later
that day in the worlds of business, money, the markets,
travel and technology, marketing and media, careers, e-commerce
who is finishing a 3.5-year stint as anchor/reporter for
the KFWB-Los Angeles Times Noon Business Hour, will
host the new show.
currently editor of CNET Radio's morning show and producer
of its "Anchor Desk with David Coursey" program,
will join as producer.
will handle guest bookings. Publicists can pitch him at
a temporary fax number: 609/520-7773.
Los Angeles Times has assigned David Shaw, who
has been the paper's media critic since 1974, to write a
media column for the new Sunday "Calendar" section
and a food and wine column for the revamped "Food"
Television's media director, Deborah Nettune, a former
host of morning shows in Chattanooga and Dallas, said she
regarded PR people as "somewhat naive" when she
was in TV.
felt they had no clue what I needed to do to put together
a story," said Nettune, who is based in Ridgewood,
N.J. "A lot of people don't do their homework."
One of the
worst things a PR pro can do when pitching is to "sound
like a salesperson or have a pitch that's really not conversational,"
said Nettune. "You have to tell the story as if you're
telling it to a friend. And if you exude confidence and
interest in the story, that will rub off," she added.
Presswire's survey of more than 775 college newspaper
editors shows they are particularly interested in two topics.
of those surveyed prefer arts and entertainment-related
press releases, while 65% choose career-related news and
press materials as their favorite.
editor David Granger has assembled a panel of leaders
in science, business, society and culture to suggest candidates
for a special issue on 'Best and Brightest" people
in the U.S.
news continued on next page)
Edition, August 7, 2002, Page 4
MORROW NAMED PROJECTS EDITOR
Mark Morrow was named deputy managing editor/projects
at The Boston Globe, replacing Ben Bradlee Jr., who
is leaving to write a book on baseball great Ted Williams.
Fiona Luis, who is currently editor of the Globe's "Living"
section, will replace Morrow as assistant managing editor
for features, overseeing the paper's "Living/Arts,"
"Life at Home," "Calendar," "Food,"
and "Books" sections.
The changes became effective Aug. 5.
SIKOWITZ JOINS BUDGET TRAVEL
Peter Sikowitz was named executive editor of Arthur
Frommer's Budget Travel magazine.
His appointment coincides with a jump in frequency from
six to 10 issues annually starting with the Sept. 2002 issue.
Sikowitz was previously with the custom publishing division
of Time Inc. where, as assistant managing editor, he edited
publications for Sony, Jaguar and Royal Caribbean.
He will work with Frommer to plan the magazine's content,
assign articles and manager the staff. The magazine features
coverage of low-cost vacation destinations.
CROW LANDS AT PRIMEDIA
Elizabeth Crow was named EVP/editorial director of Primedia's
consumer magazines and media group, which consists of more
than 150 magazines, including New York, Seventeen,
Motor Trend, and Automobile.
Crow, who had been editorial director of the women's health
group at Rodale, has worked for several publishers since
beginning her career as an editorial assistant at The
ROBERTS IS NY TIMES NAT'L
Jim Roberts, 46, was promoted to national editor of The
New York Times. He was named deputy national editor
last year, and will oversee the Times' 25-member reporting
staff throughout the U.S. outside of Washington, D.C.
He succeeds Katherine Roberts, 50, who was named to replace
Susan Chira as editor of the "Week in Review"
section. (The two Roberts are not related.)
Chira, 44, was named editorial director of book development,
overseeing the creation of books that arise from the newspapers'
journalism. She replaces Mitchel Levitas, 72, who plans
Kathleen McElroy, 43, a deputy sports editor, was appointed
associate managing editor for weekends, in charge of news
coverage for the Sunday and Monday editions.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL GOES
The Wall Street Journal's editors and reporters
are returning to cleaned and refurnished offices at the
paper's headquarters at 1 World Financial Center.
The Journal's offices, which occupied seven floors of
the 40-story building, were evacuated Sept. 11 after the
second plane struck the Twin Towers.
Since the attacks, about 400 editorial staffers have been
working from the company's New Jersey offices and in rented
space in SoHo and other parts of Manhattan.
Steve Goldstein, VP/communications for Dow Jones, the
Journal's parent company, said not everyone is happy about
the move back. He said some want to make sure their own
safety is not compromised, citing concerns of contamination.
South African Airways,
in Johannesburg, is publishing a new mini-sized newspaper
for distribution to passengers of its late afternoon and
Called Business Day PM, the content will be primarily
business driven, but it will also include general news,
a page of late breaking sports, science & technology
and business travel news.
Peter Bruce, who is editor of the paper, can be reached
via e-mail at [email protected].
The Tribune Co.,
Chicago, will buy Chicago Magazine from Primedia
for $35 million in cash.
The buyer, which also publishes The Chicago Tribune,
said the magazine will be operated as an independent publication
and continue to maintain its own editorial staff, headed
by Richard Babcock, editor.
Founded in 1952, Chicago is a monthly magazine
with news and features covering personalities, politics,
businesses, trends, restaurants, and culture & lifestyle
issues of interest in the Chicago area.
Preview" number closed last week with 574 ad
pages, up from 565 in 2001.
The September issue is Vogue's biggest issue since
1989 when it published 598 ad pages, according to Media
Also setting new records are The New York Times' "Fashions
of the Times," which has 144 ad pages, the largest
since 1996's 150, and New York magazine's "Fall
Fashion" double-issue, which closed with 115 ad pages.
Min's report shows Harper's Bazaar, InStyle,
Marie Claire, Elle and W all closed
with fewer ad pages than last year.
Fox News Channel
finished as the highest ranked cable news network
in July, with an average of 640,000 viewers at any time,
according to Nielsen Media Research.
CNN finished second with an average audience of 537,999,
and MSNBC finished the month with an average audience of
While Phil Donahue has improved MSNBC's numbers, he has
not caught up to Connie Chung on CNN and Bill O'Reilly on
Edition, August 7, 2002, Page 7
BY BIZ PARTNER
which offers web-based investor relations products and services,
has sued its business partner, the Thomson Corp., and its
Thomson Financial unit, on charges that they used confidential
information from CCBN board meetings to compete against
filed in U.S. District Court, Mass., says Thomson engaged
in unfair trade and business practices; misrepresentation;
breach of contract; and monopolization in violation of the
Sherman Antitrust Act.
founded in 1997 by Jeffrey Parker, former chairman and CEO
of Thomson Financial, and Robert Adler.
the First Call financial advisory service and sold it to
Thomson Financial in 1986. He left Thomson Financial in
1991 and took his former employer on as an investor and
partner shortly after CCBN was founded.
(NYSE: TOC) is based in Toronto and has $7.4 billion in
sales and 44,000 employees. It recently sold its more than
50 newspapers in the U.S. and has been concentrating on
adding to its Wall Street financial reporting services.
is said to have "received the most sensitive business
information" about CCBN and then used "everything
it learned...to create a directly competitive business."
Thomson allegedly broke into password protected sites to
Thomson president and CEO Richard Harrington said in a
statement that the company "categorically denies the
allegations included in the CCBN.com
lawsuit and intends to vigorously defend itself" against
the "baseless claim."
He said the complaint resulted from CCBN.com's disappointment
over ongoing negotiations with Thomson, noting that he was
surprised to read of the suit.
Harrington added that the suit is an "exploitative
attempt by CCBN.com to discredit Thomson among its customers
and investors after they failed to achieve their desired
outcome." The complaint is at www.ccbn.com/complaint.
Nike Inc. will
petition the U.S. Supreme Court to review a California Supreme
Court 4-3 ruling that it says effectively eliminates First
Amendment protection for businesses or organizations that
speak out on public issues related to their business.
Nike has retained Harvard University professor Laurence
Tribe and Walter Dellinger of O'Melveny & Myers to lead
The court held that Nike statements about alleged workplace
conditions in Asian factories, in the form of letters to
the editor, are to be treated like ordinary product advertising.
Dellinger said the case is "potentially the most
important free speech case since NY Times v. Sullivan,
the landmark Supreme Court decision protecting the press
against ruinous libel suits for reporting on public issues."
MONDAY, MONDAY CAN'T TRUST
PwC Consulting, which had planned to change its name to
'Monday' to reflect the split from parent PricewaterhouseCoopers,
has scotched that plan following news that it will be acquired
by IBM in a $3.5 billion deal. The unit, with $4.9 in annual
revenues, is to become part of IBM Global Services.
PwC had purchased the right to use the Monday name from
U.K.'s OneMonday Group, owners of Text 100 and Bite Communications
in the U.S. It closed on that $5 million deal on July 29.
OMG CEO Tim Dyson said of the transaction, "It is
amusing to see a brand of this magnitude get created and
then rolled back-especially when one of your largest clients
makes this happen by buying it out." Text 100 was named
one of IBM's PR firms in Big Blue's consolidation of its
$40 million PR account last year. Dyson feels it "somewhat
ironic" that the deal with PwC closed on a Monday.
OMG expects to come up with a new name within a few weeks,
according to spokesperson Somill Hwang.
PwC spokesperson Sehra Eusufzai did not return a call
'KENNY BOY' LAY LOOKED FOR
Former Enron CEO "Kenny Boy" Lay turned to marketing
executive Elizabeth Tilney to draw up a crisis plan after
he was informed by whistle-blower Sherron Watkins of shady
financial doings. Elizabeth is the wife of Schuyler Tilney,
the Merrill Lynch investment banker who invoked his Fifth
Amendment right on July 30 during a Senate committee probe
of Merrill's work for Enron.
After Watkins wrote to Lay complaining about CFO Andrew
Fastow's off-balance sheet partnerships last August, Lay
suggested Watkins and Tilney coordinate their PR efforts.
"Ken thinks it would be a good idea for me to work
for you in our P.R. and I.R. efforts re: our current crisis,"
Watkins wrote in an e-mail according to The New York
Times, which notes that Elizabeth's resignation from
Enron came two days after Lay's. Lay, according to the Times,
had Tilney sit in on important meetings and serve as a close
She is credited with unveiling the company's now-infamous
"crooked E" logo in 1997, and earned $800,000
from Enron last year.
Schuyler was the lead investment banker for ML's Enron
business and is said to have vacationed, along with his
wife, with Fastow and his wife, Lea.
said Schuyler was one of 96 ML executives who invested $16
million of their own money in one of Fastow's partnerships
called LJM2. Burson-Marsteller has a long-term relationship
with Merrill, but it is not clear if the firm is involved
in providing counsel on the Enron matter.
who left Ogilvy PR Worldwide in May, 2001 for an executive
VP-corporate and investor relations post at IPG?s Weber
Shandwick, is back at the WPP Group unit as SVP/director
of investor relations. Lovallo departed WS last November.
Edition, August 7, 2002, Page 8
Two lawsuits point up the
dangers of companies getting involved in "strategic
Such deals are the rage
since they seem like a quick, cheap way of boosting power
and getting publicity.
A number of these link-ups
go nowhere or bust up after one party decides it's being
taken advantage of.
Orbis Broadcast Group
sued PR Newswire in May, claiming that PRN used a partnership
to learn all about OBG's business practices and people and
then proceeded to raid both. PRN denied the charges but
the suit continues.
CCBN, which provides
IR web services, has sued the Thomson Corp., its business
partner, claiming Thomson, for its own reasons, blocked
CCBN's efforts to expand . PRN, part of $3 billion+ United
Business Media, and Thomson ($7B), are giants compared to
partners Orbis and CCBN.
Earlier this year, IABC
worried that partner Ragan Communications was getting the
better end of the relationship. PRSA, after years of partnering
with PR Week, decided PRW was a competitor and could
no longer use PRSA's mailing lists (4/10 NL).
Ralph Nader (Time,
Aug. 5) put his finger on the silence that has enveloped
the business world.
He's amazed that none
of the thousands of people who knew about Enron and other
scandals ever said anything. "Would a despotic dictatorship
have been more efficient in silencing them?...the system
is so efficient that there's total silence. The Soviet Union
had enough dissidents to fill Gulags," he told Time.
What companies are doing
is taking the equivalent of the Fifth Amendment with the
press. If they answer any questions, they fear they will
be liable for answering more questions. So they remain silent.
We'd like to know how
Hill and Knowlton gets double the fees per staffer that
other firms get; the intricacies of Merrill Lynch's zero-coupon
bond offerings for Omnicom, and why at least one NASDAQ
company (WPP) does not follow NASDAQ's pledge of clarity
in financial reports. No one from the above three wants
to talk about such topics. This repressive atmosphere, coupled
with the weak economy, is hurtful both to PR and advertising.
PR was the worst performing sector at OMC, IPG and WPP in
the first quarter. WPP has now said PR is down 11% in the
first five months.
Lehman Brothers says
it "assumes" the holders of OMC's $1.75B in zero-bonds
will demand their money back next year and OMC will refinance
at 4.5%, cutting 18 cents from EPS in 2003.
One contributor to the
OMC message board on Yahoo! thinks the crisis atmosphere
at OMC units is hurting creativity.
Firings and uncertainty
have made the workers in one West Coast office "very,
very depressed," message #2907 says. Creative people
"freak out and freeze" in such an atmosphere and
clients "get exasperated...and having no ads they like,
they don't spend..." says the writer. There's certainly
some logic to that. The posting also knocks claims of "synergy"
between OMC units, saying, "no one helps another group...it
is truly every man for himself." Also interesting,
among the deluge of 3,000+ messages posted since the Wall
Street Journal article on OMC June 12, are messages
#3726 (worker morale in New York is "very low"
with many employees fearing they will be fired in the near
future) and #2905 (18 issues facing OMC). Creatives will
think twice before selling out to financiers in the future.
an indication of the tight security enforced by OMC, visit
437 Madison Ave. (49th st.) where OMC (including
its DDB unit) is the major tenant. A large red sign in the
lobby tells visitors, "You are warned you may be video
and audiotaped by as many as 40 or more surveillance cameras
as you enter this building." Visitors must stand before
a camera and state their name and destinations. Our info
is that this has nothing to do with 9/11.
who are hogtied and frustrated in one area, will find ways
to express themselves in others. IR execs at the
annual National IR Institute conference are guarded in their
comments, even in the hallways. They are careful about any
references to their companies. But at night, the most popular
activity is Karaoke, where members sing their hearts out.
CEO Lou Thompson is an avid participant.
held some teleconferences with leaders last week but no
financial information was released except the statement
that ad revenues were down. The spring issue of PR Strategist
had 2.5 ad pages among a total of 44. The Society is mute
on the national topic of financial misreporting and non-reporting
because it refuses to supply current financials to its own
members. Chapter Assembly delegates were elected prior to
last Dec. 1 under PRSA bylaws but h.q. has made no attempt
to gather these names and make it easy for members to communicate
with them. Ten nit-picking bylaw changes will be put to
the Assembly as busywork lest this body take up serious
subjects. The apathy even among the leadership was evident
in the conference calls since only 34 of 1,000+ eligible
leaders turned up on one. Only four spoke. Counselor Gabriel
Werba urged that non-APRs be allowed in the Assembly. Another
indication of apathy is that Del Galloway and Judith Phair
are running unopposed for president-elect and treasurer,
respectively. Art Stevens bested Carole Gorney, Vivian Hamilton
and Dean Kruckeberg for secretary.
-- Jack O'Dwyer