This Week in PR (7 June)
About the author
Heather leads the CIPR public affairs diploma and digital communication diploma courses. PhD, BSc, PG, RSA, CAM
As guest editor of the pick of posts about public relations this week, Heather Yaxley offers an eclectic selection of communication-related stories and news-linked items.
In the news
- Land art with a purpose – Swiss eco artist, Saype, has launched Beyond Walls, an attempt to create a social movement through the largest human chain. Inspired by migrant rescue group, SOS Méditerranée, Saype’s transitory spray-painted giant frescos feature a motif of interlocking hands. The artwork appears first from 3-15 June in Paris’ Champ de Mars (under the Eiffel Tower), before a three-year tour across 20 cities including London.
- Of less artistic merit, Oi Trump – by A level student, and owner of online market place Born-Eco, Ollie Nancarrow – continued a tradition of ‘penis protests’ according to the Guardian.
Guess who’s been busy today mowing a stiff message for Trump under the Stansted flightpath… Please share and let’s see how far we can spread the welcome!#climatechange #Trump #welcometrump pic.twitter.com/crnZo5rnDv
— born_eco (@born_eco) June 2, 2019
- Seems a shame that the aircrew from Luke Air Force Base in Arizona who left a phallic shaped contrail whilst on training manoeuvres (as reported by AirForceTimes) weren’t in the cockpit of Air Force One.
- When @POTUS travelled #Portsmouth for #DD75 commemorations, the arrival of Air Force One at Southampton Airport was certainly memorable for waiting passengers and the PR team, including PR & Communications Executive, and Bournemouth University PR graduate, Dinara Omarova. Hoping we can share more insight into Dinara’s experiences of the day in a future PR Place post.
- Meanwhile, PR Academy’s Kevin Ruck and Ann Pilkington were in France for the 75th anniversary of D-Day and posted some brilliant photographs of the Dakota parachute jump, from Sannerville, Normandy. Great initiative by Daks over Normandy.
Diversity of voices
- Fantastic to hear so many amazing first-hand stories from D-Day veterans, including 95-year old Harry Read and 94-year year old, John “Jock” Hutton, who took part in the anniversary parachute jumps.
- The Museum of Public Relations in New York marked the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising with a celebration of the industry’s LGBTQ community on 6 June. Panel discussions focused on stories of PR’s role in the Gay Rights movement and the experiences of today’s LGBTQ practitioners.
— The Museum of PR (@museumofpr) 7 June 2019
- Carmel O’Toole, Senior Lecturer in Media and Public Relations at Sheffield Hallam University notes the importance of dedicated local media in amplifying community voices – in the context of the delay in the publication of the report into the Grenfell Tower fire.
The news release of the appointment of Sharon White, as incoming Chairman of John Lewis, highlights her career history and other credentials. Yet many media articles emphasise her age, educational background, race and gender. The Times digest reports: “Sharon White, 52, a comprehensive-educated daughter of Jamaican immigrants, becomes the first black woman to chair such a large British retail business”. Other media focus on her £990k salary – comparing it to her current £275k remuneration at Ofcom, but not the £1.44m pay package of outgoing chairman, Sir Charlie Mayfield, or reported higher incomes of executives in the retail industry. There’s been no comment yet on the Twitter account of @johnlewis – who is “not a retail store”.
An interesting article at Which? on Backto60 campaign, described as “the unlikely group of campaigners in their 60s” taking on the UK government with a judicial review at the High Court this week for a fair state pension. See @2020comms.
“Although the object of the exercise was intended to be equalisation of treatment, in fact, what has happened is the reverse.”.-Michael Mansfield QC https://t.co/rxFDHSRP2v
— #BackTo60 #50sWomen #OneVoice #GreersLaw (@2020Comms) June 5, 2019
- Local Democracy, Journalism and Public Relations by Carmel O’Toole and Adrian Roxan presents extensive interviews with communications professionals working in local public services.
- Marketing the Moon by David Meerman Scott and Richard Jurek claims “when Neil Armstrong took that giant leap for mankind, it was a triumph not just for American engineering and rocketry but for American marketing and public relations”. The push by the NASA public relations team for live television broadcasts “argued that telling the story was just as important as the achievement itself.”
- Successful Employee Communications by Sue Dewhurst and Liam FitzPatrick published by Kogan Page offers a guide to tools, models and best practice for internal communication practitioners.
Fact checking – what Twitter thread readers do best
- The fabulous Twitter account of @DrMatthewSweet continued to present a coherent case regarding problems with the latest book by @NaomirWolf that he raised in a now notorious “ferociously polite” Radio 3 interview:
Until then I think these will be my last remarks about the book. I want to thank @naomirwolf again for being generous in scholarly disagreement. It matters so much to get these things right.
— Matthew Sweet (@DrMatthewSweet) May 27, 2019
- Then we have Gray ‘serial millennial myth debunker’ Kimbrough, whose challenges on Twitter have attracted the attention of global media. Did you see the extensively reported claim by behavioural scientist and author Paul Nolan that married people are miserable? Another example of an author misunderstanding the data as Kimbrough’s Twitter take-down reveals.
Without twitter, I’d just be a random guy with an econ PhD who knows a *lot* about the ATUS, the CPS, and Census data.
With twitter, I’m engaging with journalists at the Washington Post, NPR, Vox, and the BBC. I’m sharing graphs with people all over the world. It’s pretty great. pic.twitter.com/wDie79nB1X
— Gray ‘serial millennial myth debunker’ Kimbrough (@graykimbrough) June 4, 2019
- Again, errors in media reports of the sad death of Noa Pothoven in the Netherlands are presented in a Thread reader unroll of the Twitter thread by writer and podcaster, @NaomiOhReally
A 17-year-old rape victim was NOT euthanised in the Netherlands.@euronews @Independent @DailyMailUK @dailybeast are all wrong
It took me about 10 mins to check with the reporter who wrote the original Dutch story.
Noa Pothoven asked for euthanasia and was refused (cont.) pic.twitter.com/e7PYQSCxG1
— Naomi O’Leary (@NaomiOhReally) June 5, 2019
- Buzzfeed offers further analysis of how the inaccurate story started with a contentious British news agency (CEN), were picked up by the Mail Online and spread, mostly without attribution – or any attempt to check accuracy – through news channels and social media. After O’Leary’s challenge on Twitter, some outlets did edit or rewrite their original copy.
- Fact checking challenges aren’t the preserve of academics and broadcasters, as the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders shows with its set of 13 #Brexit myth buster Tweets or read the unroll version
In other PR news…
- The thread of the ‘Disruption’ Stirling University Post Graduate Conference on Twitter includes some slides from fascinating topics including a presentation by Professor Anne Gregory on “The Dark Side of AI”.
— Ed Thomas PR (@EdThomasPR) May 31, 2019
- CIPR has published its Integrated Report 2018 ahead of its AGM on 20 June, where keynote speaker, Meera Selva, Director of the Journalism Fellowship Programme at Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (RISJ), will discuss global trends impacting news and media consumption.
- PRCA is recognizing 50 PR pioneers as part of its year-long campaign to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
- The 35th annual #VolunteersWeek led by NCVO has offered useful download resources and a comms pack support to help charities and other organisations promote the invaluable work undertaken by millions of volunteers across the UK.
— NCVO Volunteering ? (@NCVOvolunteers) June 3, 2019
PR Place editor Richard Bailey returns next week with his usual round-up of PR posts and news from blogs and social media.