When comedian Ken Dodd was put in the dock for stashing in excess of three hundred thousand pounds in shoeboxes and suitcases, and placing more untaxed money in twenty offshore accounts, he claimed: “the money was the savings from my taxed income.” Dodd’s hapless losing prosecutor was Brian Leveson QC. So what to make of the Jimmy Carr affair? Read on ›
Trust and reputations
We are supposed to be short of trust and reputations are certainly under constant and vicious attack. We need to see where trust really does lie, and whether we ought to recalibrate our assessment of reputations.
Here’s a manifesto in favour of decent top-down adult leadership rather than the febrile fashions of the crowd. Read on ›
Edelman’s Trust Barometer is a major highlight of the PR calendar because it provides global and historically comparative data we can mull over. This year there’s a welcome shift in Edelman’s narrative. Gone is the anti-profit, anti-business and all stakeholders are equal tone that I’ve criticised in the past. Read on ›
Why are so many PR pros embarrassed by what they do for a living? This normally hidden angst becomes transparent whenever they attempt to define the essence of our trade. Nothing illustrates this better than the four supposedly modern definitions of PR being discussed by PRSA and CPRS, all of which share one fundamental flaw: evasiveness about what PR is really about. Read on ›
Who should PRs work for? Well, according to Rosanna M. Fiske, Chair and Chief Executive, Public Relations Society of America, everybody has the right to have their voice heard in the global marketplace of ideas. I agree. But Ms Fiske doesn’t, not really. Read on ›
I’m sitting lakeside near Zurich after a swim, and I surf on my friend’s handheld electronic thingamajig. It lands me on Paul Holmes’s eponymous Report. There I click on a video by Richard Levick, CEO of Levick Strategic Communications. He’s discussing three common mistakes that companies and countries make when faced with a crisis. Oops, and he then makes four classic PR errors himself. Read on ›
The president of the United States presides over a sluggish economy. Unemployment is increasing, gas prices are high and his administration’s various initiatives to boost the depressed housing market – a key economic influence – have all failed. Consumer and business confidence remain low and economists are downgrading growth forecasts. Yet Barack Obama’s approval ratings remain above 40 per cent and he seems as popular in Europe as his predecessor was reviled. Is this simply down to public relations? Read on ›
So, the scandal-ridden English FA accuses the scandal-ridden FIFA of corruption. The media are calling for Mr Blatter’s head on a platter. PR Week’s PR “experts” are urging FIFA to cringe and apologize, reform and move on. (What we call ARM PR.) Meanwhile, Mr Blatter asks, crisis, what crisis?
This essay first appeared late last year in A Sorry State: Self-denigration in British Culture, edited by Peter Whittle with a foreword by the historian Michael Burleigh. I’m very grateful to Peter Whittle for allowing me to share it with you here. Read on ›