research_11-19.gifFollowing today’s announcement about Dan Abrams‘ new business venture, Abrams Research, questions have been raised about the ethical implications of one of the firm’s services: working journalists providing public relations advice to a paying client.

The issue was first raised in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal stories about the launch of the consulting firm.

Gawker’s Ryan Tate has a point: “A general magazine editor, or blogger without a beat…though he may have no specific area of coverage, really should not be getting paid to answer questions about how a publication — like, say, his — might cover something when he may well have to decide how to cover that very thing a short time later, with the added complication of having been paid/bribed by the subject.”

Abrams addresses the topic with PRNewser: “No Forbes reporter, for example, is going to be part of a panel on how to get better media coverage from Forbes. It’s not happening. Period. We have contracts for prospective network members that require the disclosure of even a possible conflict which we intend to enforce vigorously. Finally, I think in the end if it’s bad for ‘journalism’ it’s bad for my business.”

Meanwhile, former Huffington Post editor Rachel Sklar, who is assisting Abrams with the start-up, tells us why she joined up…

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