Media issues

Categories: Culture Wars / Media issues / Political spin / Reviews

21 May 2018

One comment

Media’s lost art of public debate keeps Trump in power

In his just published book Media Madness: Donald Trump, the Press, and the War over the Truth, Howard Kurtz, a former Washington Post columnist, explores how the media became the ‘opposition party’ to an unlikely President. It delivers a compelling account of how,  by refusing to engage in proper debate and resorting instead to insults and fear-mongering, the fourth estate betrayed its historic mission to hold power accountable to the public. He warns that the media’s failure to grapple with the major issues of the day risks damaging their reputation to such an extent that it may never recover. Read on ›

Categories: History of PR / Media issues / Trust and reputations

18 May 2018

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How social media became toxic

Do you remember the advent of social media when they were praised for being disruptive, positive innovations? The talk was of long tails, wisdom of crowds, the end of old-fashioned business models (dead tree press is dead) or statements like the new world is bottom up – or flat – rather than top down. Now they are being discussed by the same enthusiasts as if they were managed by oligarchical villains selling addictive, toxic products and lifestyles to an inert public that is blind to reason. But the commentators’ new-found pessimism is as misguided as their abandoned optimism. Read on ›

Categories: Crisis management / Culture Wars / Media issues / Political spin / Trust and reputations

28 July 2017

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German media scores own goal in the Culture Wars

A just published report from the Hamburg Media School, commissioned by the Otter Brenner Stiftung, accuses the German media of succumbing to steamroller journalism in support of Angela Merkel’s refugee policy in 2015 and early 2016. The researchers looked at 35 000 articles published over a 20-week period. They found that the media ceased being professional regarding the refuge crisis, when they adopted an overwhelmingly emotionally-involved tone in favour of the government’s actions. Read on ›

Categories: Crisis management / Media issues / Political spin / PR issues / Richard D North

1 January 2013

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The Beeb, Plod, HMG and PR

By Richard D North

The big picture

Anyone who cares about Britain, its government and its wider official culture is shaken and stirred by recent media storms. PR professionals ought to be a great position to understand what’s been going on. After all, they are media-obsessed, and narratives and messaging are at the heart of the problem faced by our institutions. Read on ›

Categories: Media issues / Political spin / PR issues

5 December 2012

6 comments

Open letter to CIPR on implications of Leveson’s report

Following my piece ‘PRs shouldn’t rush to welcome Leveson‘, Phil Morgan, Director of Policy and Communications at the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), kindly responded. His comment and my reply were too detailed to leave in my comments. So here’s a post that starts with his remarks and ends with my response in the form of an open letter to CIPR that explores some more the challenges Leveson’s report poses for PR professionals in the UK.  Read on ›

Categories: Media issues / Political spin / Trust and reputations

2 December 2012

4 comments

PRs shouldn’t rush to welcome Leveson

PR professionals need to interrogate the Leveson report in great detail. That’s because there’s the possibility of another Dangerous Dogs-type Act coming on. In 1991 several high-profile outrages involving fighting dogs biting, maiming and killing babies and old folk were whipped up by the tabloids to create a moral panic. Then emotionally-incontinent parliamentarians rushed through draconian legislation. The result is now acknowledged to have been a disaster for public protection, dogs owners and justice (1). Read on ›