This week in PR (3 November)

About the author

Richard Bailey Hon FCIPR is editor of PR Academy's PR Place Insights. He teaches and assesses undergraduate, postgraduate and professional students.


It happened this week

  • Chris Lee: Halloween and the resurgence of interest in the paranormal (31 October)
    ‘Samhain (pronounced ‘Saw-ween’) marks the traditional start of winter that begins when the sun sets on 31 October. With its bonfires, guising and decorated turnips, Samhain’s traditions are often thought to have influenced Halloween, an abbreviation for All Hallows’ Eve, the day before All Saints’ Day on 1 November.’

Profession and ethics

  • David OIajide: The Importance of Ethics in Public Relations (30 October)
    Whilst journalists are considered an integral part of upholding democracy by holding those in power to account, the PR world can be deemed the dark side by protecting those in power, suppressing truths and amplifying half-truths. Ethics in PR, for some, seems an oxymoron, yet there is a growing rise in adherence to codes of ethics as the industry evolves.’
  • Ella Minty: The Intelligence Game (29 October)
    ‘Communicators – and for the purpose of this article by “communicator” I mean someone who really knows what they are doing with the art and science of their trade – are natural information gatherers; we are like a sponge that constantly absorbs information, and we only “leak” the information that we need to, want to, or know that matters for what we seek to achieve.’

Purpose, climate and ESG


  • Sophie Morello and  Katja Novakovic: Purpose on Payday October 2023: COP28 Special (27 October)
    ‘Will the grip of fossil fuel interests be too strong to move the dial on the global energy transition?  With COP28’s president Sultan al-Jaber also head of the UAE’s state-owned oil company, the ambition and expectations of this COP have been and continue to be approached with caution by some commentators.’

Consulting, skills and careers

Gender, diversity, health and wellbeing

Politics, public affairs and public sphere


  • Matt Redley: AI Safety Summit puts Rishi to the test (2 November)
    Since Brexit, Britain’s role as a major convener for international cooperation has been tarnished. This week, Rishi Sunak and the UK Government pitched to change this at the inaugural Artificial Intelligence Safety Summit, bringing together representatives from the USA, the EU, China and the U.N, to discuss international efforts to manage the risks of Artificial Intelligence (AI).’
  • Ben Smith: The PRmoment Podcast: Alex Aiken on how the UK government attempts to counter the disinformation campaigns of Russia and China (1 November)
    ‘What [those spreading disinformation] try to do is divide communities, cause dissent and division which means that the news is seen through a different prism in the UK and can’t be trusted.’ 
  • Perry Miller: Labour: the new party of the homeowner? (31 October)
    ‘Major reform of the planning system, to tackle the paralysis at the heart of decision-making, remains elusive – at least until the next parliament. Which is a shame, because the system we’re working with has sold us short – 4 million homes short, to be exact, over the past 75 years (Centre for Cities, Feb 2023).’
  • Stuart Thomson: Interview with Vallath Kavitha Krishnan [podcast] (27 October)
    ‘My mother worked at Weber Shandwick and she introduced me to someone who gave me a job. I specialised in crisis management before turning to public affairs.’

Brands, content, community and creativity

  • Andy Green: Creativity in the age of AI – being technically savvy but creatively smarter and wiser (no date)
    The optimum way ahead is to harness the full potential of new AI tools but also deepen your understanding of the craft of human creativity. You need a deeper appreciation of yourself – how you are creative, what motivates, and fuels your curiosity, drive, and passion. You also need to cultivate better conversations – within your own head and with others.’

Research, data, measurement and evaluation

  • Matt Hicks: How excess share of voice helps PR reporting (31 October)
    One metric that’s becoming increasingly common across marketing and related disciplines is excess share of voice (ESOV). I think this can play an important role in helping to demonstrate the value of PR activity, not only in defining how you’re doing against the competition, but also proving how your activity is contributing to business growth.’
  • Alicja Bors: Embracing the transformative power of AI (1 November)
    “AI anxiety” could cause the PR industry to fall behind what the market expects from us all, i.e., to be more creative, more cost-efficient and get things done faster, to get better at solving formally unsolvable problems. The industry should be looking beyond task automation when it comes to the possibilities AI presents and focus on the transformative capabilities it has.’

Crisis, risk and reputation


  • Emma Drake: ‘Deep Dive’ with Steve Leigh: using research to improve your brand reputation [podcast] (2 November)
    ‘Digital gave the opportunity to measure the impact of PR; all of a sudden you could see word of mouth. So I went out on my own with the intention of measuring online reputation.’
  • Frankie Oliver and John Harrington with Kerry Sheehan: ‘AI is a reputation crisis waiting to happen’ PR Week podcast (1 November)
    ‘AI has definitely made the Israel-Hamas disinformation problem worse. Online it’s difficult to sift through the barrage of disinformation. Artificial intelligence is adding a whole new complexity to the problem.’
  • Amanda Coleman: Hearing different voices (1 November)
    It has been shocking to hear about the level of confusion, panic, bravado, overconfidence and just plain incompetence that was in place at the heart of Government at a time of significant crisis.’
  • Sophie Milliken: Crisis-proofing your Profile with Jonathan Hemus [podcast] (30 October)
    ‘Crisis management is two things: being ready for a crisis; and getting the crisis response right (doing the right thing and saying the right things).’

Behaviour and influence

  • Scott Guthrie: What effect will platforms’ takedown of offending creator content have? (1 November)
    The Online Safety Act has finally become law… The Act promises a safer Internet for children and seeks to empower adults to have better control of what they see online.’
  • Rebecca Graham: The rise of the tech “LinkedInfluencer” (30 October)
    LinkedIn turned twenty years old in 2023 and has undergone much transformation within its two decades. Once purely a place to find and list jobs, as well as connect with peers, the platform has morphed into something more akin to Instagram, or Facebook. It’s no longer just a professional networking site, but a social media platform in its own right.’

Internal communication 


  • Jo Hall and Lisa Macmillan: Jennifer Sproul on career skills, mistakes & personal ownership [podcast] (1 November)
    ‘I’m a marketing graduate who started working in trade publishing when it was all about magazines because the internet wasn’t a thing. Then I moved over to a membership association. The IoIC felt like a good blend of content and news along with careers and governance.’
  • Rachel Miller: Podcast: How to make your first IC role a success (27 October)
    ‘If you are a team of one, you will be doing all sorts. You will be doing the thinking and the doing.’

Media, digital and technology


  • Callum Keene: Government pushes on with plan for crypto regulation – but questions remain for business (2 November)
    ‘The Government’s response this week to the consultation on the future regulatory regime for cryptoassets represents a significant, positive step forward – matching other markets around the world – in establishing a regulatory framework to allow crypto and blockchain to flourish as a driver of growth in the UK fintech sector.’
  • Dr Philippa Hardman: AI: the New Electricity? (2 November)
    ‘AI represents more than a new piece of technology: it’s an infrastructural development with fundamental implications for how humans live, work and learn.’
  • Richard Stone: Avoiding the fat-finger slip of AI (31 October)
    PR professionals can really benefit from using AI – for supporting technical research, monitoring the media, reporting and content management – we just need to make sure that everything we say is true.’

Academic, education and training