The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 1
LOOKS FOR FANCY FOOD PR
is looking for a PR firm to handle its participation in
the Fancy Food Show New York slated to run June
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.
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.
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.
has okayed a budget of up to $128K for the Javits Center
Cerda ([email protected])
is fielding inquiries about the project up until May 7.
Proposals are opened May 18.
VISAS CARBERRY JOINS
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 giants
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
GILLESPIE OPENS FOR BUSINESS
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.
IPGS ROTH RECEIVES 21.3%
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 IPGs
proxy, received a very good high priority objective
rating from the boards compensation panel. That score
reflected Roths 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
The panel praised Roths
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.
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 IPGs capital accumulation plan,
financial planning medical/dental and matched charitable
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.
IPGs 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
4A's DROPS ADVERTISING FROM
The American Association
of Advertising Agencies, a name used since 1917, has been
dropped in favor of the 4As.
4As president Nancy
Hill, noting a Harris poll that blamed ads for causing people
to buy things they cant afford and also noting that
many 4As members have significant PR practices, announced
the change at a meeting of the group in San Francisco last
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)
2008 revenue tables of independent firms in travel and sports/leisure
Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 2
WORKS PR FOR CHRYSLER LENDERS
Verbinnen & Co. is handling PR for group of hedge fund
lenders under fire for forcing Chrysler into Chapter 11.
so-called Committee of Chrysler Non-Tarp Lenders
was among lenders criticized by President Barack Obama April
30 as speculators and blasted by BusinessWeek
a statement distributed April 30 by Sard VP Cassandra Bujarski,
the group said they were working toward Chryslers
recovery and had made significant concessions,
but were precluded from directly negotiating with the federal
fact is, in this process and in its earnest effort to ensure
the survival of Chrysler and the well being of the companys
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
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.
of the funds, Perella Weinberg Partners, reversed course
and supported the governments offer after Obama lashed
NEVADA ECODEV PR PACT 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
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 ODwyers that
Infrancas 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 www.expand2nevada.com.
COBURN HEADS FEMA COMMS.
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 Bursons 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
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.
WS BACKS PORK INDUSTRY AMID
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.
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
arent 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 NOW ZENZI COMMUNICATIONS
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 firms 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,
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 Diegos ten largest.
National clients include
Dreyers/Edys Grand Ice Cream and Emergen-C.
Local clients include Keep A Breast Foundation, Torrey Pines
Bank, Aptera Motors, Skinsational Spa, Paychex/Benetrac.com,
Mickelson Capital, and San Diego Restaurant Week.
Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 3
NAST PULLS PLUG ON PORTFOLIO
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.
was apparently told of the decision by CN chairman S.I.
Newhouse earlier that morning.
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.
October, Portfolio was cut to 10 issues a year from 12 and
its online staff was decimated. The magazine was launched
in April 2007.
DISNEY JOINS HULU
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.
DONATON LEAVES EW
publisher Scott Donaton, who took over for Dave Morris at
the end of '07, is leaving May 8 to launch a brand consulting
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
BALTIMORE SUN CUTS THIRD OF
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.
ED CHRON GETS NEW PUB
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
HUNKE TAPPED AT USAT
David Hunke, who was publisher
of Gannetts 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
S-L ALUMS LAUNCH NEWS SITE
Veterans of the Star-Ledger
buyout have launched newjerseynewsroom.com,
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.
AL JAZEERA GETS HOME IN U.S.
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,
doesnt expect a strong negative backlash against his
decision to carry AJE. He said MHz is dedicated to providing
news with an international perspective.
news continued on next page)
Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 4
BOLSTERS REHAB OF OUSTED THAIN
Sachs & Associates has no comment about
the April 27 front page Wall Street Journal story
called Thain Fires Back at Bank of America.
firm of celebrity publicist Ken Sunshine took on the embattled
financier and Merrill Lynch CEO John Thain following his
messy ouster from BoA.
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.
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.
Stickler, a BoA spokesperson, declined to respond to Thain's
point that BoA okayed the bonuses.
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."
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.
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
DART PRAISED FOR CANDOR BY
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: "Shes
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
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."
was the major sponsor.
Ranking of Travel/Hospitality PR Firms
here for ranking.
Ranking of Sports/Leisure PR Firms
here for ranking.
Edition, May 6, 2009,
OF PR FIRMS
PR EXECS TO JUDGE LIONS
Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival has announced
its slate of 16 judges for the inaugural PR category of
festival, which runs from June 21-27 in France, added PR
to its slate in November for the upcoming event.
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
is the only firm represented twice as its Singapore CEO,
Jimmy Tay, is also on the jury.
400 entries have been received in the PR category. Entry
fee was €380, about $500.
PR Lions will be given out on June 22.
INDY COUNSELORS IN CONN. VENTURE
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
Dreyers and Edys 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 Freedoms 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
McCains failed 2000 bid for the GOP presidential nomination.
Denver, won a Silver Key the PR category from the Business
Marketing Associations annual Gold Key Awards. The
firm was honored for a 1,500-word bylined article for client
MWHs 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.
Strategic Communications, New York/SpectrumDNA, social
media studio, as AOR for public and investor relations.
+ Company, New York/EnveMe, fashion, music and lifestyle
online retailer, for media and blogger relations product
launch and other PR.
Group, New York/Guzov Ofsink, law firm, and New World
Home, modular home company, for PR.
PR, New York/Wellspring, weight loss programs for
children and young adults, for PR.
New York/Scott Barnes, makeup artist in fashion industry,
for PR for his personal brand and upcoming book,
Shandwick, New York/SecondMarket, online marketplace
for illiquid assets, as AOR for PR.
Company, New York/Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of
America, for association management.
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.
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.
6, Atlanta/Carters 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.
Chicago/Dresner Corporate Services, for PR.
Millerschin Group, Auburn Hills, Mich./Brainstorm
Creative Consulting, marketing and innovation consulting,
for PR and new business dev.
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.
Hill, San Francisco/Cyntellect, cytometry systems,
and Altair Therapetuics, biopharmaceuticals, for life sciences
& Associates, Los Angeles/Newport Power; Lynx
Realty; Henrys Hat and Goldilocks Restaurants; Cambra,
and the Yes on PR campaign in Beverly Hills, for PR and
Torrance, Calif./AutoPacific, research and analysis for
auto industry, as AOR for marketing comms.
& 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.
Toronto/Fujifilm Canada, as AOR for PR for its digital
camera division. APEX PR had the account.
Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 6
POLLS JOURNOS ON PR SITES
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.
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.
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.
said another element that reporters favor is a Help/FAQ
section where they can see how questions of other reporters
have been answered.
results of the survey are at tekgroup.com.
SIMON ADDS WEB TO TOUR MIX
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 Mizrahis 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 POSTS VIDEOS FOR
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
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 http://inr.mediaseed.tv/Soundbites/.
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.
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 &
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
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.
Gould, who had headed Porter Novellis 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.
Schrader Marcell, spokesperson and director of communications
for the U.S. Dept. of Transportations 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
Electrics political action committee manager in D.C.
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.
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.
Edition, May 6, 2009, Page 7
be so negative for so many people.
said the industry needs a better image especially since
clients are cutting budgets and the government is considering
stricter regulation of the industry.
Harris poll found that 66% of Americans blame advertising
for at least part of the current economic crisis.
Has Poor Ethical Sense
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.
were Lee Wilkins, professor at the Missouri School of Journalism,
and Renita Coleman, professor at the University of Texas
School of Journalism.
ad agency owner who was against alcohol consumption would
most likely take on a multi-million dollar beer account,
the study found.
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.
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.
people "suspend moral judgment to focus on the financial
implications of their decisions, specifically the financial
implications for themselves and the client," the book
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
Pros, Journalists Fared Better
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.
PR people, belonging to "fewer professional organizations"
resulted in a "significant correlation" with "higher
quality ethical reasoning," it was found.
finding was that working for a large organization correlated
with higher ethical reasoning.
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
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.
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 4As 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 4As
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.
MOVIES SHOW REPORTERS AS HEROES
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.
Edition, May 6, 2009,
American Assn. of Advertising Agencies says advertising
has such a negative image
that it has to change its name to 4As.
We doubt this change is going to do much for the 4As
Hill, 4As president, must engage in some serious talks
not only with PR people but with journalists.
must be aware of the strong ethical and moral elements in
both occupations that are lacking in adland.
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.
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.
ranked just below seminarians, medical students and practicing
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?
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.
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.
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.
4A's agency was once an agency that guaranteed media would
be paid. In 1991, 4As 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.
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
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
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."
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.
Theyre 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.
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
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
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.