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Posts Tagged ‘Washington Redskins’

#PRFail: Even History Proves the Washington NFL Team Owner is Lying

snyder funny or dieIt’s not a new debate in the world of sports. And it’s a reinvigorated debate in the world of PR.

Should the NFL team in Washington D.C. change its offensive name? Granted, to many people in the nation’s capital, the “Washington Redskins” may not be an offensive term because they are sports homers. That’s to be expected.

And then, there’s Daniel Synder, owner of the team and principle emeritus officer of living in la-la land.

This is a team that carries an 80-year tradition of classic football has always carried this cloud over its headdress. And why? Because that’s the way it’s always been? Try again, because history has just corrected that very sentiment — back from the dead.

 

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Mediabistro Course

Presentation Writing: Design and Delivery

Presentation Writing: Design and DeliveryLearn how to use storytelling techniques and visual content to create and deliver successful pitches and presentations! Starting August 6, Amanda Pacitti, the manager of learning at Time Inc., will teach you the best practices for presentations, from using software like Prezi and Powerpoint, to writing your script, and using images, audio, and video to drive your points. Register now! 

Stephen Colbert finds his ‘Report’ in Twitter Trouble

Without question, Stephen Colbert is a juggernaut of political hijinks and online shenanigans. Much like his progenitor, the great Jon Stewart of “The Daily Show” fame on Comedy Central, Colbert has become a political hack (slash) phenom because of his hilarious takes on boring and mundane political issues.

Only now, he is finding there is a wall to some humor and it appears that Colbert may have just ran smack dab into it. In fact, he even took to Twitter to apologize for the now deleted tweet that has gone viral. Twice.

So, what happened? Glad you asked…

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Redskins Hire Veteran Political Advisors to Handle Name Crisis

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Washington RedskinsSpeaking of football, what about those Washington Redskins?!?!

You almost certainly missed this Friday dump last week, but after initially denying rumors published by left-leaning blog ThinkProgress, a Redskins spokesperson confirmed that the team has hired a crew of veteran political communicators to help deal with the ongoing controversy over its name.

All of these advisors have a history of working with Republican Party candidates and officials on messaging/public polling, and each of them now runs his own consulting firm.

Check out the lineup after the jump.

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Redskins PR Chief Yanks Mic from Reporter’s Hands

Let's talk media relations strategy...

Let’s talk media relations strategy…

Got your attention yet? OK. Today brings us a very weird report from the world of sports PR in which the National Football League‘s most embattled team demonstrates some…unconventional ways of dealing with the media.

For context, the Washington Redskins fired manager Mike Shanahan yesterday, because a 3-13 record does not inspire one to perform the traditional “Gatorade dump” victory dance.

Here are some of the (very) lowlights from Washington Post sports scribe Kent Babb‘s excellent report on the event:

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Sonic Drive-In Feeds Chiefs and Redskins Fans Some Crow via Twitter

SonicSignIt’s no secret that I loathe politically correctiveness. People get too offended about too many things these days. In the words of a villainous philosopher, “Why so serious?” However, when it comes to the NFL, well … I’ll let you be the judge of this ballyhoo.

Full Disclosure: Sonic Drive-In is sheer greatness and I would adore to do PR for this company. (Call me?) However, to paraphrase a marketing slogan, “This is not how you Sonic.” Just look at the sign outside a Missouri Sonic, soak it in and more after the jump…

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Dan Snyder’s Redskins Letter Wasn’t a PR Win At All

daniel-snyderWe’d just finished analyzing Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder‘s damage control letter today when a commentor alerted us to this afternoon’s satirical Washington Post op-ed by Sally Jenkins, along with this one and this one. The three articles collectively demolish each of the supposed strong points of Snyder’s strategy:

  • The Native American coach who Snyder claims led the inaugural squad was almost certainly not Native American.
  • The stated purpose of the “Indian” school this coach attended was “forced assimilation”, aka seizing children from their parents.
  • The late-period coach Snyder claims consulted with a local Native America groups before approving the team’s logo actually created the group himself.

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UPDATE: 5 Best Points in Washington Redskins Owner’s Damage Control Letter

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Washington RedskinsEverybody who’s anybody (and a few people who aren’t) has already weighed in on the controversy surrounding the Washington Redskins name. Our newest contributor Shawn Paul Wood addressed it on Talent Zoo‘s Flack Me blog this week, concluding that it’s a perfect PR challenge for our era.

Now for the damage control case study. In the face of increasing pressure, team owner Dan Snyder (who is himself a comms vet) finally addressed the issue in a statement that went beyond his usual “Hell no, and you can put that in all caps” response. In this letter to members of fan organization Redskins Nation, Snyder did the smart thing: rather than come out swinging and berate his detractors as PC thought police, he went for emotion and nostalgia.

Let’s review some of his better lines:

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Should Washington’s Football Team Continue Using the Name ‘Redskins?’

Finally, a sports controversy that has nothing to do with steroids, gambling or murder!

The debate over the Washington Redskins‘ name and its relationship to the Native American community has been with us for a while, so here’s what happened this summer:

  • Team owner Dan Snyder said he’ll “never” even consider changing the name
  • NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told NBC that “The name from its origin has always intended to be positive and has always been used by the team in a highly respectful manner”
  • Upstate New York tribe Oneida Nation launched a radio ad campaign that will pressure the team to change the name throughout the season
  • A group of Native Americans filed suit looking to strip the team of federal trademark rights to the name
  • Former Raiders CEO Amy Trask wrote that it is “unacceptable to use a derogatory term when referring to any person or any group of people; and the word Redskins has been widely used throughout our history as a derogatory slur”
  • “Full-blooded American Inuit chief” Stephen Dodson “reached out“ to tell the team that he’s “honored” by the name and that others can’t claim to speak for the entire NA community