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Bad PR

Bad Headlines Keep Coming for Airbnb

airbnbA PR pro in Manhattan wanted to make a little money while out of town over a recent weekend, so she “rented” her apartment to a woman claiming to be an active service member who just wanted “a place to hang out before she got shipped out.”

The rest of the story is, at this point, predictable: the publicist got a call from the cops after a man who was visiting her apartment for a “massage” slashed the woman paid to provide it; on re-entering her abode, she found the telltale signs of illegal activity.

One anonymous sex worker (aka the world’s most reliable source) told The New York Post that “It’s more discreet and much cheaper than The Waldorf.”

So it is. The point here is that Airbnb’s promise comes with some very unique challenges.

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Storytelling for Media Professionals

Storytelling for Media ProfessionalsStarting April 22, this in-person workshop will teach you the specific ways to incorporate storytelling into your personal and professional life. Students will examine the role of storytelling in business and put their newfound skills into practice with a series of improvisation, writing, and presentation exercises designed to help them uncover personal stories. Register now! 

Bloomberg: ‘NSA Knew about Heartbleed Bug for Two Years’

nsa heartbleedAnd things were going so well with the National Security Agency’s community relations repair after the Snowden ballyhoo. No? Oh, then never mind. Let’s just pile on because this report is so many shades of crap.

Last week, the technology community were flipping its lid because of a nasty virus called “the Heartbleed bug.”

In essence, if you have any presence on social media, you may want to change your passwords, like now (check out this nice breakdown from the sages at Mashable). At any rate, it skeered a few million people and it turns out the NSA may have known about this thing — and exploited it for its benefit — for two years.

Whoops.  Read more

Atlanta Archbishop has Catholics Rethinking Vow of Poverty

Gregory's House

Because that reeks of a humble rectory, right?

If you belong to a Catholic Church, you may know the three vows clerics take when entering the ministry – chastity, conformity, and poverty. Be the life cenobitic (in a monastery) or eremitic (as a hermit), anyone in the clergy is to take on a vow to personify and illustrate the life of Christ.

In terms of the media and PR, this hasn’t been the case for clerics with horrendous stories of altar boys and stuff. Conformity is also something that has been in debate, all the way up to the Pontiff discussing the rights of marriage in the clergy and among the congregation. And now, poverty has taken center stage thanks to Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta.

How? He owns a $2.2 million home and now, he’s being “asked” to sell it.  Read more

More Congressional Fail: Elected Officials Think They Are Underpaid

recycle_congress_cover_ (2)

Meanwhile, back in reality … someone figure out how to do this. Please? 

It’s no secret that our U.S. Congress is full of more talking heads than Jeff Dunham’s closet. In fact, with a national record worst approval rating of nine percent, it’s a miracle they are still employed (but then again, that shows you how stupid voters are believing commercials, but that’s another story).

Earlier this year, we covered a report that came out about the U.S. Congress and Senate — they are mostly millionaires.

According to the Center of Responsive Politics (via USA Today), 48 percent of these elected officials sworn to vote on behalf of our good conscience (not theirs, whatevs), are millionaires. Now understand, they get paid — about $174,000. Not bad, right? Yet nearly half of them don’t drive their own car, don’t pay rent in their own home and rarely buy their own food.

And now, it gets even worse. These fools think they are underpaid… Read more

PETITION: Putin, Take Our Alaska, Please.

Alaska-secede-back-to-Russia

Hey kids. U.S. History could get all jacked up!

Have you ever been on an Alaskan cruise? The vistas alone are worth the price of admission. Add to that the weather, the memories, and the food, and you have a marvelous getaway that you will remember forever. At least I did.

Yet, while reflecting upon my journeys of yesteryear, I read this straight from WhiteHouse.gov:

Groups Siberian russians crossed the Isthmus (now the Bering Strait) 16-10 thousand years ago. Russian began to settle on the Arctic coast, Aleuts inhabited the Aleutian Archipelago.

First visited Alaska August 21, 1732, members of the team boat “St. Gabriel »under the surveyor Gvozdev and assistant navigator I. Fedorov during the expedition Shestakov and DI Pavlutski 1729-1735 years

Vote for secession of Alaska from the United States and joining Russia.

Oh, it’s real. Find out how just how real after the jump…

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Another Robertson Put His Duck in His Mouth About Gays

willie-and-phil-robertson

Like Father. Like Son. 

While the Duck Dynasty marketing machine steamrolls every one into submission, you may have forgotten Phil Robertson’s rant on gay people when he said the following back woods, country witticism:

“It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man’s anus,” he said. “That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying?

And then he followed that gem up with a little rebel-flag-waving ignorance about Jim Crow laws:

“I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person,” Robertson is quoted in GQ. “Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

And now, his son decided it was his turn at the Roberston Klan … clan lectern. Read more

President Obama Stuck in the 80s, Causing Serious PR Issues for BlackBerry

breakfast club

Coming to a White House near you.

By now, if you have any inkling of interest in politics, you have discovered the one thing that sets President Obama apart from all other gentlemen of his ilk — his serious embrace of the greatest decade in the history of ever. Of course, I’m referring to the 1980s.

This school of thought first became popular during the final presidential debate of 2012 — Obama V. Romney: This boring crap is getting personal! The famous quip was over foreign policy and Romney hearkening back to a better day of the Cold War. To wit, Obama replied, “The 1980s are calling and they want their foreign policy back.”

Well, thanks to his choice in outdated fashion and technology, the president may be causing bad PR too.

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CNN Ratings Fail: HLN Calls Upon Psychic to Discuss MH370

mh370

While the mystery continues, so does the quest for ratings.

As it is with any natural disaster, foreign conflict, national-interest kidnapping, or another long-term story that has the nation engrossed in details, broadcast news finds ways to continue to keep said story as relevant as possible. And there are phases to go with this news cycle as well.

1. The Lede — This is the primary story and a recap of the news that brought America to this point.

2. Primary Stories — Take MH370. It’s the intrigue about the missing plane and the global search parties off Australia, China, India, and wherever else.

3. Secondary Stories — These are the “Well, people are still interested so let’s talk about stuff others may not care about — saaaay, the 239 people that were board.”

And now, the circus is in town and pulled up to CNN over the weekend.

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More #McFail: Couple Kicked Out of McDonald’s for Sitting ‘Too Long’

funny-mcdonalds-sign

Yes, it deserves to be a trend — #McFail!

You would think it’s more of a vendetta than reporting #PRFail, but no, it’s real. The Clown really has been sucking out loud that much lately. If you have enough to sit in a fast-food drive-thru, take a gander at this list of bad PR stories from PR Newser, which I’m trying to get #McFail to catch on, so help a brotha out.

And now that it has been about a week or so, it’s time for McDonald’s to corral some more bad PR. This time, the Clown stuck his size-18 Bozo shoes in the behind of two octogenarians out of a Virginia McDonald’s because — wait for it — they were sitting too long.

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Los Angeles Times Writer ‘Screws’ Up Reporting Job for a Source

pigeon-vs-facepalm-statue-

We understand. Before the fall, you just get crapped on.

Meet Jason Felch. 

He was a star investigative reporter for the Los Angeles Times. A guy whose credits stood on their own. That is, before he was “dismissed” after editors discovered he had an inappropriate relationship with someone who was a source for a front-page story that the newspaper says contained an error.

A double screw job, me thinks… *golf clap*

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