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Posts Tagged ‘Kim Jong Un’

Kim Jong Un Keeps North Korea in the Dark, Literally

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Must have something to do with Dennis Rodman or those damn pistachios

See this colorful — or absence thereof, depending on whether you call Pyongyang home — picture from NASA? It’s making the rounds for one particular reason. That black hole in the middle of the Sea of Japan and the Korea Bay, just a smidge off the Yellow Sea.

Yeah, that’s North Korea. Ironic, no?

Kim Jong Un, heir to the family of ‘The Walking Dead (and Heartless), literally keeps a dark cloud over his entire country because he can.

The glamour shot of the forbidden country to everyone but demented basketball players was taken by the Expedition 38 crew aboard the International Space Station on Jan. 30. The only significant dot of anything comes from Pyongyang, its capital city.

Interestingly, and borrowed from several reports, per capita power consumption in South Korea is 10,162 kilowatt hours, vastly more than North Korea’s 739 kilowatt hours, according to figures compiled by the World Bank.

Think about that a little the next time you think our government has too much power, kids.

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North Korea Now Officially America’s Least Favorite Country

POSTER DEPICTING NORTH KOREAN MILITARY POWER DEFEATING US IS DISPLAYED IN PYONGYANG

All those outreach efforts by unofficial spokesman Dennis Rodman have finally paid off: this week Gallup informed us that North Korea ended Iran’s unprecedented ten-year, Tom Brady-level streak as Americans’ least favorite country.

How did they achieve such an impossible feat, you ask?

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Dennis Rodman Finally Gets the Help He Needs…from a PR Firm

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2005 was a rough year for everyone.

See, here we thought Dennis Rodman had finally succeeded in becoming relevant again after spending many years in the “remember that guy?” wilderness where outrageous celebrities go to spend a few months in rehab and reflect upon lives of excess.

Today, however, we received a press release from New York firm The Pitching Staff announcing that its latest client would indeed be the former Bull.

We appreciate the honesty in the release, starting with the subject line “Dennis Rodman’s people ask PR firm to help”. We also like the bite-the-hand-that-feeds-you opener:

“In the aftermath of Dennis Rodman’s very public rant on CNN, Rodman has tapped Jules Feiler at The Pitching Staff for public relations council [sic].”

While the word “alcohol” doesn’t appear anywhere in the release, we like how the writer cuts right through the fat before listing the usual client history, etc.

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Dennis Rodman Loves Kim Jong-Un, Gives Disturbing Interviews

Something tells us that Dennis Rodman can’t afford media training services. A few subtle hints:

  • He cannot pronounce a word to save his life
  • He says he “loves” his “friend” Kim Jong-Un and strongly implies that captive American Kenneth Bae did something very, very bad (he’d love to talk about it but can’t for some reason we’d rather not explore)
  • He begs the question: Are you gonna smoke that cigar or just wave it around for the camera?
  • He makes CNN’s Chris Cuomo look good

We might recommend this clip as a case study in how not to behave during an interview, but it’s too painful to watch more than once.

North Korea Announces Execution with the Craziest Press Release You Will Ever Read

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“I wanna hold your hand…”

You may have heard that the other jolly fat man, Kim Jong Un, ordered the execution of his own uncle this week for “treason”, but you really have to read the press release that the North Korean media wrote to let the rest of the world know that they are completely insane. Our favorite copywriting wins via the Korean Central News Agency:

“…people throughout the country broke into angry shouts that a stern judgment of the revolution should be meted out to the anti-party, counter-revolutionary factional elements.

…a special military tribunal of the DPRK Ministry of State Security was held on December 12 against traitor for all ages Jang Song Thaek.”

It was a public execution “for all ages!” Get ready for a whole lotta crazy after the jump, emphasis ours.

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Here’s the North Korean Luxury Ski Resort of Your Dreams

Thanks, Associated Press

We think you’ll agree that it’s nice to periodically check in on the Worst People in the World to confirm that they are, in fact, insane. Good for a little perspective on your own career, no?

Today brings news that Kim Jong-Un—fresh off allowing VICE and Dennis Rodman to shame every other Western media outlet with the first “Inside North Korea” story in forever—will continue his ongoing “look how rich we are” campaign by opening a luxury ski resort this week. The resort, which Kim made sure to announce to the rest of the world several months ago, is now “open” to the “public” after nearly a year of “furious labour” via “solider builders”, and it doesn’t sound even the least bit frightening.

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Kim Jong-Un, Master of Viral Content?

PR pros wouldn’t normally tell clients who want to go viral to “keep it creepy”, but the approach seems to be working for one Kim Jong-Un.

Kim’s PR strategy is actually very similar to that of major blogs: post lots of content on a regular basis and make it as weird and “WTF?” as possible. Most of the very, very few people in North Korea who have Internet access work for Kim’s propaganda department. And while much of the West chuckles at their strange videos and stories about unicorns, this viral content seems to grant a certain legitimacy to an oppressive and genocidal regime. South Korea’s national security director tells The Washington Post that the “headline campaign” is at least partially responsible for a sevenfold increase in news coverage and searches related to North Korea.

Now check out this YouTube page if you enjoy watching insane people do insane things.

The lesson here is really all about creating a story and then newsjacking your own work in order to gain even more attention. Of course, most of the public will be less interested in a product rollout than a mysterious dictatorship’s ongoing attempts to scare everyone’s pants off. Still…

Meet Communist North Korea’s Go-To PR Guy

What’s the toughest PR challenge you can imagine? Representing an institution charged with sheltering child abusers? Defending a multinational corporation for mistakes that cost others their lives and livelihoods? How about presenting the very best of a murderous dictatorship to an outside world that firmly rejects every attempt to make nice?

We were fascinated by today’s Christian Science Monitor profile of the man Kim Jong-un hired to perform public relations duties for the People’s Republic of North Korea. That still-mysterious country is one of the few things on the planet Earth that remains less popular than the Kardashian family.

His name is Alejandro Cao de Benós, he’s a Spanish man with “aristocratic roots”, and his official blog features a lot of stories about “Corea del Norte”. What else? He appears to have been an enthusiastic North Korean sympathizer for some time, and as the only non-Korean employee of the nation’s foreign ministry, it’s his job to travel around the world, speak to various media outlets and try (in vain) to convince people that Kim Jong-un isn’t as bad as we all seem to think he is. Cao de Benós’s only real messaging strategy is to insist that “everything you’ve heard is a lie” and that every supposedly bad thing North Korea does is in direct response to an aggressive action from the West (aka America).

Oof.

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North Korea Makes ‘We Are the World’ Tolerable With Nuclear Propaganda

We’ll go ahead and say it: if anyone could make an instrumental version of the awful Michael Jackson/Lionel Richie/every other lame pop star in the universe charity single “We Are the World” bearable, it would be North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.

Kim, whose barely believable PR strategies include giving free candy to babies and announcing the discovery of the ancient unicorn’s secret tomb, seems determined to convince his subjects that North Korea’s nuclear weapons program will soon be mighty enough to straight up destroy all the country’s unfortunate enemies–entire nations of evildoers like, say, The United States. It’s an interesting look at how the other .000001% of the world lives.

The key message: “Despite all kinds of attempts by imperialists to isolate and crush us… never will anyone be able to stop the people marching toward a final victory”. Our favorite part of this bizarre video is the “footage” of America’s doom ripped from the video game “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.”

Larger PR lesson: How many times have we told you about the importance of original content?!

Weird PR: North Korea’s Kim Jong-un Gives Free Candy to Babies

Kim Jong-un North KoreaToday brings an interesting answer to that age-old question: How do murderous dictators endear themselves to members of their adoring/oppressed public (beyond the usual death threats, endless propaganda reels, and incredible displays of nationalistic pride like this one)?

North Korea‘s Kim Jong-un takes a novel approach to the challenge of better serving the people who never directly supported him in the first place: today his nation’s state-run media let the world know that he sent every single North Korean child 2.2 pounds of candy in celebration of his own mysterious birthday (no one can agree on his age).

While this tradition is unusual, it’s nothing new: it began with the current dictator’s own grandfather. The logic behind the strategy is perverse, but we have no doubt that these yearly gift baskets serve as bright spots for the citizens of a nation as restricted and suppressed as North Korea.

Now we’re curious about Google‘s “don’t be evil” co-founder Eric Schmidt, who arrived in the world’s evil-est country today alongside former New Mexico governor and United Nations ambassador Bill Richardson. What’s he doing there, exactly?

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