Posts Categorized: Ethics

Fake News Creates Real Challenges for Journalists and PR Professionals

The drumbeat over the growing spate of “fake news” stories reached a crescendo last week when the 2017 AP Stylebook felt compelled to address proper journalistic style when referring to “the modern phenomenon of deliberate falsehoods or fiction masked as news circulating on the internet.” Ironically, “fake news” is far from new. The Onion and National Inquirer were peddling this cheap brand of journalism long before Al Gore ever invented the internet. What is new is the impact “fake news” is having on the Fourth Estate; where trust in traditional news media is at an all-time low. A September 2016 Gallup Poll revealed that “Americans' trust and confidence in the mass media ‘to report the news fully, accurately and fairly’ has dropped to its lowest level in Gallup pol ... ⇢ read more

Thought Leadership in the Age of Fake News

How to position as a thought leader in the age of "fake news"One of the traditionally best routes to positive brand identity, media exposure, and best of all—public trust, is if the founder, CEO, or public face of an entity you represent is, or has the potential to be, what we call a “thought leader.”

“Thought leader” is a jargon-y term, somewhat overused, but succinctly descriptive. A thought leader is a trusted expert in his/her field, often called upon to discuss innovation, best practices, or even the future of said field. For example, Elon Musk is a thought leader in electric vehicles and space travel; ⇢ read more

Come on, Can’t You Be Original?

Marisa Vallbona photo web By Marisa Vallbona, APR, Fellow PRSA, president of CIM Incorporated, This blog post originally appeared in PRSAY, a blog published by the Public Relations Society of America. Have you ever encountered a colleague or acquaintance you never thought was particularly bright and suddenly they’re churning out thought leadership pieces that position them as industry gurus? Ever wonder who flipped the switch in their brain to inspire them to produce those pieces that just don’t sound like anything they could say in person? As social media continues to explode, so does the number of ... ⇢ read more

Shiny objects and made-up comments fuel PR controversy

lisa fd image This photo from a recent Vanity Fair article (2013) shows the glare from a building, that has resulted in a PR controversy. By Lisa Faulkner-Dunne, Lisa Faulkner-Dunne and Associates Public Relations It certainly seems like common sense, and basic ethics, to avoid making up names and  posting rash and inflammatory comments on your client’s digital media pages, or even worse, on their adversary’s or competitor’s  pages. Yet this ridiculous junior high type behavior happens. In Dallas, a former NBC anchor-turned-PR-specialist (hired, no doubt because he had “good media contacts,”) recently disgraced himself, the law firm that hired him and a high profile client at the City of Dallas, by resorting to ... ⇢ read more

It’s Not the Mistake, but the Cover-Up that Counts

I love teachers.  Anyone who follows me on Facebook knows my daughter teaches music.  She, and most of her colleagues do a great job. But this is a PR Blog, and hence, it is with a heavy heart I read this article in the Omaha World-Herald.  So, I’m taking this opportunity to remind my clients, my colleagues and my followers it is better to confess to the crime (mistake, if you prefer) than to cover it up. http://www.omaha.com/article/20130507/NEWS/705079937/1694#peanut-butter-cover-up-costs-teachers-their-jobs I’ll never forget the wise words of a Sunday school teacher and High School counselor, who told us, “It is okay to say you are wrong.”  These teachers and the paraprofessionals have learned a lesson the hard way.  But we ALL can learn from their mistake.  Just think what damage they’ve done to their profession and their district.  Trust is s ... ⇢ read more

“Checkbook Journalism” From a PR Pro’s Perspective

By Marisa Vallbona, APR, Fellow, PRSA This blog post first appeared in PRSAY In an age of declining journalism standards, where anything goes and credibility is in serious question, it’s about time we see a network take the high road and announce it’s going back to the true practice of journalism. According to The Daily Beast, ABC News division president Ben Sherwood has decided the network will do just that and ⇢ read more

If A Quarter of a Million Dollars Isn’t Enough to Make You Behave…

This blog post originated on PRSAY, a forum for PRSA members and other public relations professionals to engage in a dialogue with PRSA leaders, exchange viewpoints, and share perspectives on issues of concern to the Society and the public relations industry as a whole. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policies or positions of PRSA. With all ⇢ read more