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Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 1


Chile is looking for a PR firm to handle its participation in the “Fancy Food Show New York” slated to run June 28-30.

The country, according to its “letter of invitation” to PR firms, is looking for the “utmost visibility, publicity and promotion in order to assure broad coverage in specialized media.”

Chile ranks No. 17 on the list of food-exporting countries. It has aggressive “plans of being among the top 10 in the coming years becoming a true food power,” says the letter of invite.

The Trade Commission of ProChile New York is coordinating the search. It needs a firm to handle press conferences, issue releases, supervise advertorials, arrange interviews and organize a tasting for an audience of about 250 people.

Chile has okayed a budget of up to $128K for the Javits Center event.

Alejandro Cerda ([email protected]) is fielding inquiries about the project up until May 7. Proposals are opened May 18.


MS&L Worldwide has hired Joe Carberry, chief of PA at Visa Inc., as western regional president of the Publicis Groupe unit. He will oversee the work of MDs Bill Orr (San Francisco) and Vickie Fite (Los Angeles).

Carberry, who joins MS&L on May 18, was in charge of the credit card giant’s corporate initiatives, digital operations, image advertising, executive visibility and grassroots campaigns, litigation and public policy.

Prior to Visa, Carberry counseled entertainment, technology and financial clients at Fleishman-Hillard. He reports to Jim Tsokanos, president of MS&L/N.A.


Ed Gillespie, who was counselor to President George W. Bush, has launched Ed Gillespie Strategies in Alexandria, Va. to target CEOs, companies, associations and coalitions.

Before joining the White House, Gillespie ran Quinn Gillespie and Assocs. with Jack Quinn, a key advisor to Vice President Al Gore and counselor to President Bill Clinton.

Gillespie founded Policy Impact Communications with former Republican National Committee chief Haley Barbour, now Mississippi Governor and potential Republican candidate for the Presidency. He succeeded Barbour as RNC chairman, spearheading the party as it won the White House and held Congress in ’04.


Interpublic CEO Michael Roth received $10.8M in total compensation last year, a 21.3 percent boost from `07, as the ad/PR conglom posted a surge in full-year net to $265M from $131M.

Roth, according to IPG’s proxy, received a “very good” high priority objective rating from the board’s compensation panel. That score reflected Roth’s “role and success in leading the company to accomplish the ambitious goals set as part of its three-year turnaround plan and in delivering financial performance that was the strongest the company has posted since 2000.”

The panel praised Roth’s partnership with the board of directors and his “personal leadership and commitment” that led to the company continuing to make important strides in its progress toward achieving employee and supplier diversity objectives.”

Roth’s financial package breaks down into salary ($1,332,500), stock awards ($4,275,939), option awards ($2,337,208), non-equity incentive plan ($2,500,000) and other compensation ($397,433). The final category covers IPG’s capital accumulation plan, financial planning medical/dental and matched charitable contributions.

Frank Mergenthaler, CFO, got a 4.7 percent increase in total comp to $4.5M, while Philippe Krakowsky, executive VP/strategy & corporate relations, remained steady at $2.6M.

IPG’s former CEO John Dooner, who is now CEO of McCann Worldgroup took an 11.2 percent cut in total comp to $5.2M.

The ad/PR conglom is off to a rocky start in `09, suffering a $74M first-quarter loss. It cut 2,800 people from the payroll during the past six months.


The American Association of Advertising Agencies, a name used since 1917, has been dropped in favor of the “4A’s.”

4A’s president Nancy Hill, noting a Harris poll that blamed ads for causing people to buy things they can’t afford and also noting that many 4A’s members have significant PR practices, announced the change at a meeting of the group in San Francisco last week.

“Our business is still fighting for more respect in the public sphere,” Hill told the meeting, adding: “The common perception of our business in the U.S. continues

(continued on page 7)

Inside: Page 4: 2008 revenue tables of independent firms in travel and sports/leisure categories.


Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 2


Sard Verbinnen & Co. is handling PR for group of hedge fund lenders under fire for forcing Chrysler into Chapter 11.

The so-called “Committee of Chrysler Non-Tarp Lenders” was among lenders criticized by President Barack Obama April 30 as “speculators” and blasted by BusinessWeek as “cowards.”

In a statement distributed April 30 by Sard VP Cassandra Bujarski, the group said they were working toward Chrysler’s recovery and had made “significant concessions,” but were precluded from directly negotiating with the federal government.

“The fact is, in this process and in its earnest effort to ensure the survival of Chrysler and the well being of the company’s employees, the government has risked overturning the rule of law and practices that have governed our world-leading bankruptcy code for decades,” said the group, which claims to represent teachers unions, pension and retirement plans.

BusinessWeek’s Matthew Goldstein blasted the statement as none of the funds were indentified. The New York Times headlined a piece on the group, “The Lenders Obama Decided to Blame.”

One of the funds, Perella Weinberg Partners, reversed course and supported the government’s offer after Obama lashed out.


The Nevada Commission on Economic Development, the Silver State entity which oversees units like a film office and the “Made in Nevada” program, is reviewing its PR account with an RFP through mid-May.

Reno-based Carol Infranca & Associates is the incumbent firm and has worked with the commission for the past four years. Infranca is a former director of communications for the Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority.

Kimberly Elliott, marketing director for the commission, told O’Dwyer’s that Infranca’s two-year pact was amended once to add two years, which puts the contract out for mandatory re-bid with the current RFP.

The contract is capped at $80K per fiscal year.

Proposals are due May 22. The RFP can be accessed online via


Brent Coburn, a former Burson-Marsteller staffer who worked on the Obama campaign, has been named director of external affairs for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Coburn took a leave of absence from Burson’s issues and crisis practice to serve as communications director in Michigan for the Obama bid. He was previously deputy chief of staff for Sen. Debbie Stebenow (D-Mich.).

Colburn will be responsible for the seven divisions that comprise its external affairs department, including intergovernmental affairs, international affairs, legislative affairs, private sector initiatives, public affairs, disaster operations/training and cadre management, and resource management. 


Weber Shandwick is working with the National Pork Board to distance “the other white meat” from the outbreak of swine flu in the U.S.

The Pork Board is stressing that the Centers for Disease Control and Dept. of Agriculture have not linked the borderline pandemic to any pig or pig herd in the U.S.

The group is highlighting health and safety measures at hog raising and production facilities in the U.S. and assuring consumers and media that pork products are safe to eat.

The PR effort comes as Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and trade officials have begun using the moniker “H1N1 flu” instead of “swine flu” to curb a decline in pork sales since the outbreak. President Barack Obama used the more technical name in his prime-time press conference last week.

Ninety-one cases have been confirmed in the U.S., according to the CDC.

Weber Shandwick’s Chicago office handles the pork producers’ account.

The effort to protect the pork industry has stretched to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano as well. The Pork Board is distributing this quote from the top security official: “Pork and pork products are safe and there is no basis for restricting imports. You should also know that you cannot get H1N1 from eating pork. Pork products are perfectly safe.”

The group is also providing media with soundbites and video from top staff extolling the safety of the meat.

Of course, the pork producers aren’t alone in mounting a PR defense. Airlines, travel agents, Mexican resorts and food producers are scrambling to reassure consumers in the wake of the outbreak, which has hit Phase 5 of 6 on the World Health Organization alert scale, with 6 being a pandemic.


SZPR, a San Diego generalist PR firm that grew 29% in 2008 to $1.34 million in fees, has changed its name to Zenzi Communications, noting that the German musical term means “crescendo, the culmination of carefully crafted notes, harmonies and dynamic sounds.”

Founder and CEO Sarah Znerold Hardwick says the firm’s mission is to “create a similar phenomenon for all clients.”

The firm has a new logo and a new tagline, “Be Known.”

“We believe the name Zenzi more accurately reflects our ability to articulate key messages so they resonate throughout the media marketplace,” said Hardwick.

“We keep clients continually in front of target audiences through multiple PR and marketing touchpoints,” she added.

Founded in 2002, the firm has become one of San Diego’s ten largest.

National clients include Dreyer’s/Edy’s Grand Ice Cream and Emergen-C. Local clients include Keep A Breast Foundation, Torrey Pines Bank, Aptera Motors, Skinsational Spa, Paychex/, Mickelson Capital, and San Diego Restaurant Week.


Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 3


Conde Nast pulled the plug on its start-up monthly business magazine Portfolio after two years. media blogger Jeff Bercovici broke the news April 27 that editor-in-chief Joanne Lipman broke the news to staff earlier that day, saying the decision had been made because of financial reasons at CN parent company Advance Publications.

Lipman was apparently told of the decision by CN chairman S.I. Newhouse earlier that morning.

“While the unprecedented nature of these times has made business and the economy the main topic of conversation, it has also led to high levels of uncertainty and a tremendous reduction in ad spend in the five key sectors Portfolio's business model depends on,” CN group president and publishing director David Carey said in a statement.

Last October, Portfolio was cut to 10 issues a year from 12 and its online staff was decimated. The magazine was launched in April 2007.


Walt Disney Co. is joining NBC Universal and News Corp. as an owner of Hulu, the online site of TV shows and films.

The owner of the ABC network is getting a 27 percent stake in the venture for an investment in the $35M range.

Anne Sweeney, president of Disney-ABC TV Group, said the deal is an effort to “make our shows as accessible as possible.”


Entertainment Weekly publisher Scott Donaton, who took over for Dave Morris at the end of '07, is leaving May 8 to launch a brand consulting firm.

The Time Inc. publication lost editor Rick Tetzeli in January. Jess Cagle is now in charge of editorial.

Donaton made his journalism mark at Advertising Age.

The American Society of Magazine Editors recently rapped EW for its “cover notch” ad.


The Baltimore Sun is cutting 61 newsroom staffers in a bid by the Tribune Co.-owned property to beat the recession.

The cutbacks are across the board including reporters, columnists, critics, page designers, graphic artists.

The paper is restructuring as a 24-hour, local news-gathering media company that collects content and distributes it by paper, phone or computer, according to Renee Mutchnik, spokesperson for the Baltimore Sun Media Group.

The Sun, added Mutchnik, now has a “plan for success, not just survival.”


The Chronicle of Higher Education has hired Mireille Grangenois, a Burson-Marsteller executive, as publisher.

At the WPP Group unit, Grangenois was in charge of a new multicultural practice. She counseled NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

Earlier, Grangenois was VP-advertising at the Baltimore Sun. Grangenois sold ads at Washington Post Newsweek Interactive and the Philadelphia Inquirer before joining the Sun.

She began her career as a reporter.


David Hunke, who was publisher of Gannett’s Detroit Free Press, has moved to USA Today as president/publisher. He takes over for Craig Moon, who retired April 17.

The 57-year-old Hunke also served as president of the Detroit Media Partnership, the business alliance with MediaNews’ Detroit News.

Hunke recently made news in Detroit with the decision to limit home delivery to three days a week, while upping online efforts.

Before moving to Detroit in '05, Hunke was president/publisher of the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle ('99 to '05) and VP-advertising at the Cincinnati Enquirer (`92 to '99).

Gannett also has upped USA Today executive editor John Hillkirk to editor. He has been with the paper since its launch in '82.

USAT has a circulation of 3.5M. More than 11.5M people visit its website every month.


Veterans of the Star-Ledger buyout have launched, a mix of original reporting of events in the Garden State and links to other sites.

About 40 of the 150 newspeople who took the buyout are involved in the venture.

The site is headed by Garrett Morrison, Andrew Lagomarsino and Matt Romanoski.

It claims 10K page views a week since the launch at the beginning of April.


MHz Networks, a Falls Church, Va.-based broadcaster, has agreed to carry various programming of Al Jazeera English in its 20 U.S. markets.

The Arab satellite system will be available to 18M TV viewers in places like Chicago, Miami, Denver and San Francisco.

The English language operation has been trying to crack the U.S. market for the last 30 months. ALJ is carried in more than 100 countries.

The network was heavily criticized by members of the former Bush Administration who claimed it was biased against U.S. efforts in the Middle East and Iraq/Afghanistan. It was rapped for airing videos from Osama bin Ladin.

Fred Thomas, CEO of MHz, doesn’t expect a strong negative backlash against his decision to carry AJE. He said MHz is dedicated to providing news with an international perspective.

(Media news continued on next page)


Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 4


Sunshine, Sachs & Associates has “no comment” about the April 27 front page Wall Street Journal story called “Thain Fires Back at Bank of America.”

The firm of celebrity publicist Ken Sunshine took on the embattled financier and Merrill Lynch CEO John Thain following his messy ouster from BoA.

That move was triggered by public outrage over the payment of $3.6B in bonuses to Merrill execs just prior to its acquisition by the big bank.

Thain, whose headshot graced the cover of the WSJ, contends BoA CEO Ken Lewis agreed in writing that the bonuses could be made just prior to closing the acquisition of Merrill.

Robert Stickler, a BoA spokesperson, declined to respond to Thain's point that BoA okayed the bonuses.

Thain, according to the WSJ, has been a "lightning rod for public ire over greed on Wall Street." The former New York Stock Exchange chief has launched an "effort to restore his sullied reputation."

He contends that before being asked three months ago by Lewis to resign "there was never an indication from him that he had any concerns" with the Merrill bonuses.

Thain admits mistakes such as initially lobbying for his own bonus and spending $1.2M of Merrill's money to remodel his office. After a swirl of negative publicity, he reimbursed Merrill for the rehab


Leslee Dart accepted a Matrix Award of the New York Women in Communications in the PR category April 27 from Tom Hanks, a client of her 80-person PR firm. Hanks called her “a class act” who has been as “steady as the Rock of Gibraltar for more than two decades.”

Dart, owner of 42West, an entertainment-oriented PR firm with offices in Los Angeles and New York, was one of eight recipients of Matrix Awards.

Attendance at the luncheon in the Waldorf-Astoria was 900, off from the usual 1,200.

Said Hanks: "She’s the king of her realm. She commands with kindness and honesty. She tells it like it is, she gives you the bad news along with the equally good news with no editorializing."

Hanks said Dart has told him when he should lose weight and whether he should get his eyes done.

“She tells you what you need to do. She tells you how stupid you have been … I have agreed with her 50% of the time,” he further said.

Dart said her two most “profound influencers” were her mother and Lois Smith, with whom she was partner for 15 years.

“My mother wanted me to be a teacher, which she thought was the perfect job for someone with a family, but she has been unbelievably supportive throughout my career,” said Dart. Smith, she said, "was one of the warmest and most generous people I have ever known. She taught me how to be a good human being and a tough professional at the same time."

Seventeen magazine was the major sponsor.

O’Dwyer’s Ranking of Travel/Hospitality PR Firms
Click here for ranking.

O’Dwyer’s Ranking of Sports/Leisure PR Firms
Click here for ranking.

Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 5


The Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival has announced its slate of 16 judges for the inaugural PR category of awards.

The festival, which runs from June 21-27 in France, added PR to its slate in November for the upcoming event.

Three members of the jury hail from the U.S., including Nancy Seliger, a Fleishman-Hillard partner; MaryLee Sachs, U.S. chairman, Hill & Knowlton, and Carol Cone, founder/chair, Cone. Other agencies represented globally include Ketchum (Spain), Weber Shandwick (Germany) and Burson-Marsteller (India).

H&K is the only firm represented twice as its Singapore CEO, Jimmy Tay, is also on the jury.

Nearly 400 entries have been received in the PR category. Entry fee was €380, about $500.

The PR Lions will be given out on June 22.


Five independent PR pros have formed PR Synergy Plus, a Connecticut based consultancy they are positioning as a “cost-effective” option for mid-sized and large companies.

The principals, who maintain their own independent shops but collaborate through PRSP, include Deborah Burns, former head of consumer PR at Stamford, Connecticut-based Creative Partners; Victor Emmanuel, co-founder of Emmanuel Kerr Kilsby; independent consultant Nancy Moon, Jenifer Howard, former in-house corporate PR manager for Dreyer’s and Edy’s Grand Ice Cream and an agency vet of Ketchum and Public Communications Inc., and Kelley Connors, previously with Euro RSCG Life and Medicus DMBB.

Burns said the economic downturn has created an opportunity for companies as the recovery takes hold.

BRIEFS: Two GOP communications pros have set up Amplifico with operations in D.C. and Laguna Beach, Calif. Ed Patru, VP of comms. for the GOP-aligned Freedom’s Watch, and Marc Ross, former director of grassroots/PA at the American Chemistry Council, are partners in the firm. They say they can bring a presidential-style “war room” operation to consulting. Services include media relations, crisis consulting, social media and speechwriting. Ross ran his own PR consulting shop, 2ndSix, and was political director for the Orange County Republican Party during the ’08 campaign. Patru was spokesman and strategist for the National Republican Congressional Committee and worked on Sen. John McCain’s failed 2000 bid for the GOP presidential nomination. ...Linhart PR, Denver, won a Silver Key the PR category from the Business Marketing Association’s annual Gold Key Awards. The firm was honored for a 1,500-word bylined article for client MWH’s hydropower practice in the trade journal, International Water Power and Dam Construction. ...Brainerd Communications, New York, is working with American Community Newspapers LLC as it reorganizes under Chapter 11 bankruptcy. ACN owns community papers in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Dallas, suburban D.C. and Columbus, Ohio.


New York

KCSA Strategic Communications, New York/SpectrumDNA, social media studio, as AOR for public and investor relations.

Loving + Company, New York/EnveMe, fashion, music and lifestyle online retailer, for media and blogger relations product launch and other PR.

LVM Group, New York/Guzov Ofsink, law firm, and New World Home, modular home company, for PR.

5W PR, New York/Wellspring, weight loss programs for children and young adults, for PR.

DKC, New York/Scott Barnes, makeup artist in fashion industry, for PR for his “personal brand” and upcoming book, “About Face.”

Weber Shandwick, New York/SecondMarket, online marketplace for “illiquid” assets, as AOR for PR.

Kellen Company, New York/Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, for association management.


LaVoie Group, Salem, Mass./Pegasus Biologics, “bio-surgery company,” as AOR for investor relations; Profectus Biosciences, vaccine developer, and Mithridion, biopharmaceuticals, both as AOR for PR.

Dodge Communications, Atlanta/Healthcare Billing and Management Association, trade group for third-party medical billers, for strategic comms., including messaging, web dev., PR writing and media relations.

Definition 6, Atlanta/Carter’s Inc., baby/child apparel marketer; Cox Enterprises, comms., media and automotive services; Safeguard Self Storage, and Square 1 Art, art fundraising program for schools, all for digital marketing.


IMAP, Chicago/Dresner Corporate Services, for PR.

The Millerschin Group, Auburn Hills, Mich./Brainstorm Creative Consulting, marketing and innovation consulting, for PR and new business dev.

Mountain West

Vladimir Jones, Denver, Colo./COMPA Ministries, non-profit focused on homeless, under-employed and at-risk in the Denver area, for PR and marketing for the remainder of 2009.


College Hill, San Francisco/Cyntellect, cytometry systems, and Altair Therapetuics, biopharmaceuticals, for life sciences PR.

Englander & Associates, Los Angeles/Newport Power; Lynx Realty; Henry’s Hat and Goldilocks Restaurants; Cambra, and the Yes on PR campaign in Beverly Hills, for PR and public affairs.

PCGCampbell, Torrance, Calif./AutoPacific, research and analysis for auto industry, as AOR for marketing comms.

Cook & Schmid, San Diego/SCS Engineers, environmental engineering firm, for a strategic PR program across California, Arizona and Nevada, including media relations, PR, reputation management and implementation of a thought leadership program.


MS&L Toronto/Fujifilm Canada, as AOR for PR for its digital camera division. APEX PR had the account.

Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 6


More than 70 percent of nearly 1,200 journalists surveyed by TEKgroup International said they want organizations to provide a page in their online newsrooms with links to every social media environment in which the company participates.

Notably, less than 15 percent of journalists said they visit a social networking site like Facebook or MySpace for company news. Twitter, however, was cited by 38 percent who said they would welcome company info via tweets.

TEKgroup, which builds and maintains online newsrooms for clients, said 80 percent of the polled journalists like “In the News” sections on company sites which include links to media outlets mentioning the company. Ibrey Woodall, director of marketing for TEKgroup, noted that reporters often use such a section as extended research.

She said another element that reporters favor is a Help/FAQ section where they can see how questions of other reporters have been answered.

Full results of the survey are at


D S Simon Productions, New York, produced an Internet media tour as part of a broadcast and online communications package for the release of designer Isaac Mizrahi’s spring collection with Liz Claiborne.

Along with a satellite media tour, D S Simon pitched bloggers and online fashion news outlets to interview Mizrahi during tour hours.

“By pitching bloggers and inviting online media to participate in traditionally broadcast only tours, we are able to expand outreach and coverage for our clients,” said CEO Douglas Simon.

The firm has recently completed IMTs for The American College of Physicians, State Farm, Rotary International and The Tea Council.


Medialink Worldwide has produced two more online videos for PR pros on the DTV transition and HD vs. standard definition.

The clips are part of a new series the company calls Soundbites.

The first clip covers the impact of the digital TV transition on PR and communications pros.

The second aims to educate PR pros on the issues surrounding HD vs. SD formats.

The two new clips, along with the first in the series on getting play for SMTs during “Sweeps” week, are at

BRIEFS: Kingsdale Shareholder Services, Toronto, has a new division, Kingsdale Communications, focsed on strategic communications counsel. Janet Craig, former VP of IR for Nortel Networks, heads the new unit as managing director. ...The Concept Farm, New York, won two New York Emmy Awards for Cool in Your Code, a local program on NYCTV, and for a PSA on stroke awareness for The American Heart Association.



Edmund R. Belak Jr., former national head of the financial communications practice at Hill & Knowlton, to Dukas PR, New York, to head a new corporate communications and investor relations practice. Previous posts were at Georgeson & Co., where he headed its IR practice, and Morgen-Walke, where he was co-head of the financial institutions group. Previously, he was a private equity banker at Laidlaw & Co.

Alisha Marks, senior A/E, rbb PR, to Schwartz Media Strategies, Miami, as a director focused on media relations, as well as counsel to its professional services and municipal affairs clients. She was previously an A/M at Fletcher Martin PR in Atlanta and Southeast area manager for the American Israel PA Committee.

Danielle Kazmier, who spent eight years in Burson-Marsteller's corporate and public units in New York, London and D.C., to Gibraltar Associates, Washington, D.C., as a senior VP. She recently counseled Government National Mortgage Association during the mortgage crisis and handled a global push for the launch of Intel Corp.'s World Ahead Program. Jim Lake, who headed PA at Burson, is president of GA.

Rob Gould, who had headed Porter Novelli’s health & social marketing practice and its D.C. office in a 20-year stint there, is the new president of the Partnership for Prevention. He was lead researcher for the Food Pyramid Guide account at PN. The Partnership pitches how smart lifestyle choices and healthy living can head off serious diseases. Partners include Merck, Dow Chemical, and Home Depot.

Kirstin Schrader Marcell, spokesperson and director of communications for the U.S. Dept. of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, to the American Gas Association, Washington, D.C., as director of comms. She was previously political director for the Partnership for America and director of external affairs for the U.S. House Committee on Resources under Rep. Richard Pombo (R-Calif.). She was also General Electric’s political action committee manager in D.C.

Scott Stevens, president of Austin-based marketing firm Cardinal Communications, to Nissan North America, Franklin, Tenn., as VP of corporate communications, Nissan Americas. He takes over for Alan Buddendeck, who was named corporate VP, global comms., brand comms. and CSR, in February.


Karen Foss, VP of PR for AmerenUE, Missouri, to senior VP, communications and brand management, Ameren Corp., St. Louis. She was anchor of KSDK-TV in St. Louis for 25 years before joining the utility in Feburary 2007.


Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 7

A’s Drops Advertising (Cont’d from 1)

to be so negative for so many people.”

She said the industry needs a better image especially since clients are cutting budgets and the government is considering stricter regulation of the industry.

The Harris poll found that 66% of Americans blame advertising for at least part of the current economic crisis.

Adland Has Poor Ethical Sense

"The Moral Media, How Journalists Reason About Ethics," published in 2005, found that ad professionals show a tendency not to employ "ethical reasoning" when considering which course of action to take.

Authors were Lee Wilkins, professor at the Missouri School of Journalism, and Renita Coleman, professor at the University of Texas School of Journalism.

An ad agency owner who was against alcohol consumption would most likely take on a multi-million dollar beer account, the study found.

"Ad practitioners think about immediate consequences when deciding how to act…in other words, utilitarianism is most often used to resolve ethical problems," said the book.

Ad professionals "do lack ethics, or at the very least choose not to exercise the ethical reasoning abilities they have," said the authors, who administered the "Defining Issues Test" to 65 ad people.

Ad people "suspend moral judgment to focus on the financial implications of their decisions, specifically the financial implications for themselves and the client," the book found.

The test, which confronts subjects with choices between two "goods" and two "evils," has been taken by more than 30,000 professionals of various callings since 1970.

PR Pros, Journalists Fared Better

Wilkins and Coleman, after obtaining a $10,000 grant from the Arthur W. Page Center at the University of Pennsylvania, conducted 60-90 minute interviews with 129 PR pros at PR firms throughout the U.S. in 2005 and found they scored "high" in terms in ethical awareness.

With PR people, belonging to "fewer professional organizations" resulted in a "significant correlation" with "higher quality ethical reasoning," it was found.

Another finding was that working for a large organization correlated with higher ethical reasoning.

Looking for external ethical guidance in the form of rules — whether in codes or ethics or employer-established standards — did not correlate significantly with strong ethical reasoning.

"Since high-order ethical thinking is strongly related to cognitive development, reliance on external rules may, in fact, retard this cognitive growth process," the study found.

Journalists Have Moral Character

The Moral Media found that journalists have a "highly moral character."

The Defining Issues Test, used on 249 print and broadcast reporters nationwide, found that "thinking like a journalist involves moral reflection done at a level … that equals or exceeds members of other learned professions."

"Journalism is one of the most morally developed professions, ranking only behind seminarians, physicians and medical students," said the study.

Ad professionals placed 16 in terms of ethical awareness on a list of 20 occupations.

Ranked 17 to 20 were business undergraduates, high school students, prison inmates and junior high students.

The 4A’s represents mostly the larger ad agencies. Its more than 400 members handle about 80% of ads placed in the U.S.

Until 1991, when it adopted the policy of "sequential liability," a 4A’s agency was responsible for payment of any ads that it placed.

Current policy is that media and other suppliers will not get paid unless the client of the ad agency is paid.

Omnicom recently warned its suppliers and media that it would enforce this policy.


Two current movies, “State of Play” starring Russell Crowe and “The Soloist,” starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jamie Fox, show reporters going to heroic lengths in pursuit of community service.

Crowe is in hot, driven pursuit of facts that may unearth an illegal conspiracy that involves murder, while Downey devotes himself to helping a talented, although schizophrenic, musician who lives among the homeless in Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles Times is shown as the paper Downey works for, while Crowe works for what could be the Washington Post although a different name is used.

The picture indicates that both papers are financially stressed.

Crowe fights with his editor who wants him to make a series out of a story that he does not want printed until all elements have been gathered.

Downey is accused of wasting his time with a homeless person.

Journalists will be aghast at some of the unethical techniques used by Crowe in pursuing his story including bullying a PR person.

Crowe tricks the PR person, who heads a powerful firm, into going to a hotel room where a camera has been set up to secretly record the interview. Crowe then uses the interview to force facts out of another person involved in a conspiracy.

Jason Bateman, playing the PR person, is “skittishly brilliant as a cynical public-relations guy who panics when he realizes he has got in over his head,” said the New Yorker review by David Denby.

Crowe, with hair down to his shoulders and generally unkempt, looks like one of the homeless in The Soloist. Unshaven Downey also dresses in casual clothes.

Journalists were portrayed negatively in two movies of recent years — “Scoop” and “Thank You for Smoking.”


Internet Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 8




The American Assn. of Advertising Agencies says advertising has such a “negative” image that it has to change its name to “4A’s.” We doubt this change is going to do much for the 4A’s or advertising.

Nancy Hill, 4A’s president, must engage in some serious talks not only with PR people but with journalists.

She must be aware of the strong ethical and moral elements in both occupations that are lacking in adland.

Professors Renita Coleman of the University of Texas and Lee Wilkins of the Missouri School of Journalism found that ad people favor money over morals when given a choice. “They suspend moral judgment to focus on the financial implications of their decisions,” was one conclusion reached.

PR pros fared much better in the Coleman/Wilkins research, ranking sixth on a test that measured ethical awareness, just two places behind journalists. Ad professionals ranked No. 16, just ahead of business undergraduates, high school students, prison inmates and junior high students.

Journalists ranked just below seminarians, medical students and practicing physicians.

Hill notes that many 4A's members do a lot of PR. But how has PR fared under the wings of the five conglomerates, which are run by financiers, not ad people?

For seven years, they have blocked their PR units from reporting fee income and employee totals, robbing PR of needed statistics and hurting the new business efforts of the PR operations because they appear in neither the general rankings nor the rankings in cities and 12 PR specialties. Clients use these as shopping lists.

A major problem is that adland regards consumers as “targets” rather than conversational partners which is what social media are all about. Advertising tends to be “hard sell” and PR, “soft sell.”

The 4A's board needs some PR pros and journalists on it. Traditional advertising and media are taking a beating but the ad group shows no signs of keeping up with the times.

A 4A's agency was once an agency that guaranteed media would be paid. In 1991, 4A’s adopted “sequential liability,” passing the buck for payment to the client. In the current economic debacle, this means that the $58 million owed to Omnicom unit BBDO by Chrysler, mostly for media buys, may never get paid to media.

News item: William Murray, president and COO, “PR” Society, was named “Outstanding Assn. Executive for 2009” by the New York Society of Assn. Executives.

Murray is said to have “rationalized the Society's marketing strategy, designed new business models and identified organizational priorities.”

Among “major projects” he initiated were a redesigned website and job board, implementing a new business model for the sections, and "developing and driving a multi-year, multi-level ‘thought leadership’ platform for PR called ‘The Business Case for PR.’”

We don't find much substance in any of the above or in other deeds claimed in the release. The “Business Case for PR” is in the planning stage.

Murray started out downhill with a disastrous interview with Auburn students and has continued in that direction ever since, ducking not only the press but members. Society stonewalling has escalated during his term with leaders and staff growing further apart from members.

Although Murray had been appointed a month and a half before the Jan. 29, 2007 Auburn interview and knew the questions in advance, he had almost no answers for the students. He was savaged in their blogs, one saying he "stumbled over his words and danced around the questions." Another said: "If you're making someone send you questions, Be Ready to Answer Them!" Said another: "He really didn't know jack about PR."

Murray, who took office Jan. 22, 2007, had lunch with us a week later and never spoke to us again or answered any e-mails. The only words that passed between us were at functions where running away was not an option for him.

He has no stomach for the give-and-take of press relations, which is what the Society is supposed to be about. We only know of two chapter memberships that he spoke to. He has ducked the New York chapter membership, which should have been a priority. This no doubt pleased the out-of-town APRs who are united with staff in their desire to keep PR pros out of New York h.q. They’re afraid of what New Yorkers might see and New Yorkers having influence on Society policies.

Murray could have worked to patch things up with the authors who were ripped off by the Society but he went whole hog for the press and member-avoiding habits of elected heads Rhoda Weiss, Jeff Julin and Mike Cherenson. Weiss spoke to only one of the ten biggest chapters as far as we can determine, Julin did not speak to a chapter membership until August of his term, and Cherenson will not reveal chapters he has spoken to or plans to speak to.

Murray sat on his hands while nasty things went down-the full page personal attack on us in the September 2009 Tactics and the two-page savaging of PRS Foundation officers Kathy Lewton and Gary McCormick passed at the Oct. 23-24, 2008 board meeting (concealed by the board until March 2009).

One would expect a “PR” group to get ink for its 60th anniversary but Murray got not one line of type in major media for this 2007-2008 observance.

Significantly, the award does not mention that Murray improved revenues or “the bottom line.” Society finances are thin, if dues income is deferred like other groups do (ABA, AMA, AICPA, etc.), There is about $1M in earned cash/investments vs. about $12M in expenses. Figures for 2008 are yet to be revealed.

If the Society valued income over its New York-snubbing policies, the annual conference would be in New York every other year instead of every 14 years (1990 and 2004).

As for the “Business Case for PR” (which sounds like the usual “PR for PR” program), it's odd that someone would get an award for something that has yet to happen. Anyway, there would be no one to implement it since PR pros are virtually banned from their own h.q. Giving Murray another contract will further plunge the Society into its communications abyss…Gary McCormick, chair-elect, was to have announced, after the board meeting April 17, a new Strategic Planning Committee with blacks, journalists and non-Society members on it. The board and staff have blocked him from doing that, an indication that the 2008 board is still calling the shots.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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