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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Ramah’

Does the Growth of PR ‘Threaten Democracy?’

Excuse us for the inflammatory headline courtesy of Guardian UK’s media commentator Roy Greenslade–but it certainly got our attention.

We agree with Michael Ramah of Porter Novelli when he reassures us that any report of an “impending meltdown” within the public relations industry is nothing but a bunch of noise—didn’t we tell you in August that the business is doing “just fine, thanks?”

Now here’s the key question: Is the PR field growing too large and influential for its own good?

The Guardian piece is far too short and lacking in specifics to truly facilitate an in-depth conversation on the topic, but we’d like to think it leads back to our piece about “brand journalism” and the role of a PR discipline blessed with growing influence in an increasingly fractured media world. Greenslade is primarily concerned with a series of studies showing that the numerical advantage PR pros hold over journalists continues to grow. In the United States, studies find the current ratio to be 4:1—and some authors advocate government subsidies to help keep the journalism profession viable.

Greenslade’s argument is that, as PR pros continue to outnumber journalists, the public will be deprived of a crucial filter (the press) that serves to hold the feet of politicians, businessmen, and publicists to the fire.

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Porter Novelli Hires Four SVPs

Joel Johnson.JPG

Porter Novelli, the big Omnicom shop (NYSE: OMC), announced the addition of four Senior Vice Presidents this week, three of whom will be based in Atlanta:

Jodi Fleisig, SVP of media strategy & relations in Atlanta. Fleisig was a journalist prior to joining Porter, most recently as senior executive producer at CNN, and before that at WSB-TV, the Philadelphia Inquirer, St. Petersburg Times and the Lexington Herald-Leader.

Joel Johson [pictured], SVP strategic planning and research in New York, reporting to Michael Ramah, partner and director of strategic planning. Johnson was previously director of digital strategy at Sapient Nitro, and before that co-managing director, strategy at Spike DDB, Spike Lee‘s ad firm.

Jennifer A. Jones, SVP, digital and social media in Atlanta. Jones is the author of author of the upcoming book “Can Your Brand Come Out & Play (The Power of Social Media)” and Speak Media blogger.

Judy Willis, SVP of the consumer practice, based in Atlanta. Willis was previously the chief marketing officer of the Merge Agency, and prior to that the CEO and co-founder of Bright Impact, a branding firm.