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Posts Tagged ‘CNBC’

What Would Bill Do? Media Coach Bill McGowan Takes on the Week’s News

Rick Scott

Pic via  Joe Raedle/Getty Images North America

It’s time for the latest edition of our ongoing collaboration with Bill McGowan, Clarity Media Group founder and advisor to executives at Facebook, Airbnb, CNBC and more.

1. First, Bill takes on Governor Rick Scott and his problem with fans:

Scott Blows It with Fan-Gate: If Florida Governor Rick Scott wanted to make his Democratic opponent Charlie Christ hot under the collar during this week’s televised debate, he picked the wrong way to do it.

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Americans OK with Big Business….As Long As It Stays Out of Politics

LOBBYISTS GO HOME

Today we learned of an interesting survey conducted by Burson-Marsteller and CNBC. Its main conclusion: Americans don’t inherently distrust your “Big Business” clients. They just want them to stay the hell out of the political process.

A bit late for that, though…

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Texas Firm Admits to Bribing Journalists for Coverage

money bags

Well, maybe “bribing” is too strong a word. What’s a synonym for “we will pay this supposedly objective journalist for giving our client favorable coverage?”

In a story that seemed destined to break during PRSA’s Ethics Awareness Month, a Texas firm sheepishly admitted to offering a CNBC freelancer money to include their client in a story.

Guilty pitch email after the jump (emphasis ours).

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AOL’s Tim Armstrong Gives Sincere Apologies

Or so says Andrew Ross Sorkin of The New York Times in the first episode of his planned series #ApologyWatch (and yes, we know that others used the hashtag before him).

We like how someone just had to make the “we have too many lawyers in this country” non-joke and the way CNBC’s backing music serves as an Academy Awards-style call to wrap it up, already.

But yes, Lawrence Spiegel and Sorkin made some valid points about balancing the importance of waiting to ensure that there’s meaning behind the apology with the public’s desire for an immediate response in the social media era.

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Ketchum Placed Vladimir Putin’s Controversial New York Times Op-Ed

Vladimir Putin recently took a break from using 90′s R&B to encourage Russians to reproduce in order to pen an op-ed for The New York Times.

In the article, he urges the American people to resist President Obama‘s calls for military action in Syria, writing that a missile strike “will result in more innocent victims and escalation” and even going so far as to claim that the opposition, not “President” Bashar al-Assad, was responsible for recent poison gas attacks that killed more than 1,000 men, women and children. Putin argues that the opposition, who he labels terrorists, killed their own people in order to “provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons.”

It’s a heavy charge, and Putin doesn’t shy away from characterizing the United States as an international bully that uses “brute force” to get its way; senators in both parties raced to issue statements about how terrible the article was, and this morning Leon Panetta told Today that it’s all part of Putin’s effort to “weaken” the US.

In the midst of this discussion, BuzzFeed reported—and Times public editor Margaret Sullivan tacitly confirmed—that Ketchum PR pitched the article.

Whatever your thoughts on the op-ed itself or the ethical debates regarding its placement, this is big news. How should the world respond? How should the PR industry respond?

Tesla Fights Back Against Its Own PR Fail

Tesla Model S Sedan via WiredPaypal co-founder/insanely rich guy Elon Musk isn’t afraid to defend his far-out ideas, be they successfully marketing an electric automobile or convincing rich people to move to his future colony on Mars.

But can he fight back against what CNBC calls “Tesla’s PR #EpicFail“? His auto company’s latest electric car, the Model S, won Motor Trend‘s car of the year award among a wave of very positive reviews, but The New York Times auto critic John M. Broder‘s test drive didn’t go so well.

Despite being a “technical wonder”, the car ran out of juice in cold weather when its battery died and the writer, having no access to one of the company’s remote “Supercharger” stations, had to call a towing company. The Tesla brand’s stock took a hit, inspiring Musk to lash out on Twitter. The funniest part of this four-wheel drama? Not only did Musk pitch the story to the Times in the first place, he apparently called the critic to apologize for the experience and offer him a second test drive before calling him a liar in public.

This is a strange damage control strategy, no?

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Soviet-Style PR: Firm Plants Positive Stories on Kremlin’s Behalf

President Vladamir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev A few weeks ago we reviewed the Communist Party’s unique approach to PR damage control; today we observe the ways in which the Party ensures positive coverage in foreign media outlets.

In short: they pay for it.

We’re not talking about traditional Party mouthpieces like Pravda and The People’s Daily. This matter concerns stories carried by familiar American media outlets like The Huffington Post and CNBC, which recently posted op-eds by “independent” businessmen proclaiming Russia to be “Europe’s Bright Light of Growth”, calling the government’s approach to the worldwide recession “a model of restraint” and naming Russia “the most dynamic place on the continent.”

An investigation by ProPublica, a research organization dedicated to facilitating “Journalism in the Public Interest”, found that Ketchum planted these complimentary pieces in order to improve Western perceptions of two-time Russian President Vladamir Putin’s government and the nation’s business culture. Ketchum, one of the world’s largest PR firms and PRWeek‘s 2012 agency of the year, has represented the Kremlin since 2006.

Ketchum’s filings with the US Justice Department reveal that, while the company’s employees did not write the stories themselves, they did reach out to the authors and arrange for the placement of their op-eds on prominent websites in order to encourage “foreign investments” in Russian companies.

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Should Journalists Abstain From Voting?

In case you haven’t noticed, professional journalists have a PR problem. The public’s opinion of their craft and “the media” they inhabit hit an all-time low last year. This finding reflects an increasingly polarized electorate filled with fed-up citizens who often retreat to openly partisan news sources because they believe all other media outlets to be tainted by bias in some form.

The fact that a healthy, functioning democracy needs journalists to survive should go without saying–and despite working in public relations, we’re a little disturbed to learn that PR professionals currently outnumber them 4 to 1 in this country. So how can journalists improve the public’s perception of the work they do?

For some, the answer is clear: don’t vote.

This is not a new debate. In fact, the issue arises during nearly every election cycle. Austin Business Journal editor Colin Pope believes that the act of choosing a candidate or privately voting on any given issue affects his ability to inform the public as a reliably objective voice; in his opinion, he essentially forfeited his right to vote when he decided to report on the news for a living.

We think it’s safe to say that most journalists do not agree.

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Revolving Door: Greg Kelly, GigaOm & paidContent, and More

Greg Kelly is back on the air at Good Day New York after authorities decided not to prosecute the anchor following an investigation of rape allegations. The district attorney’s office declared, “the facts established during our investigation do not fit the definition of sexual assault crimes.” Meanwhile, the New York Post is taking heat for publishing photos of the accuser.

GigaOm published a post about its decision to purchase paidContent. Click here to read paidContent’s take on it. The acquisition is getting the thumbs up.

Tina Brown sent around a memo this week announcing big changes on the Newsweek/The Daily Beast masthead.

The Huffington Post media reporter Michael Calderone looks at the impact of Twitter on coverage of the GOP race.

An investor group has purchased Heart & Soul magazine.

CNBC has a new SVP, Jim Ackerman, who has a background in VH1 reality shows.

More of this week’s media moves after the jump.

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Revolving Door: Lots of Video, An Intern Lawsuit, and More

Comic book author Alonzo Washington is on "TheGrio 100" list.

At an event yesterday, The Huffington Post and AOL introduced The Huffington Post Streaming Network (HPSN), a live network that will broadcast 12 hours per day starting this summer. HuffPo founding editor Roy Sekoff will run the network which he says will be a mix of CNN, The View, and YouTube.

The New York Times has launched “Business Day Live,” a live video show that will focus on the top business headlines of the day. It will air each weekday and appear on the outlet’s homepage.

The Wall Street Journal has also launched a new program, “Off Duty,” a lifestyle show based on WSJ Weekend that will air each weekday at 6 p.m. ET on the outlet’s YouTube channel. It will be hosted by reporter Wendy Bounds. This adds to the list of shows that the WSJ already has, including “Lunch Break” and “Mean Street.”

A former Harper’s Bazaar intern is suing Hearst for unpaid minimum wages. According to the lawsuit, accessories intern Xuedan Wang worked unpaid between 40 and 55 hours per week between August and December of last year. The plaintiff and her lawyers hope to build a class-action lawsuit. [via Reuters]

Bloomberg head Lex Fenwick has been named CEO of Dow Jones & Co. He replaces Les Hinton, who left the post in July. Fenwick joined Bloomberg in 1987 and was tapped to head up Bloomberg Ventures in 2007. [via WSJ]

TheGrio.com has revealed “TheGrio 100,” its list of “history makers and industry leaders” making waves in the U.S. today. Among those on the list are the mayor of Jacksonville, FL, Alvin Brown, Google’s Torrence Boone, and marine biologist Daniell Washington.

Clickthrough for more of the week’s media changes.

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