The New York Times wonders whether a significant presence of in the newsroom is anchors’ attempt to sartorially reinforce their election bipartisanship, instead of wearing it because of purple’s popularity with regard to fashion this season. The story provides numerous examples of members of ”the press” who have recently worn purple, but they are all men. Where’s the bipartisanship there? Should the amount of purple be more than coincidence, and eventaully symbolize neutrality beyond politics, Times staffers may need to update their wardrobes.
The Raleigh News & Observer followed up on its promise to look into the alleged extramarital activities of former Sen. John Edwards (D-NC) – sort of.
The newspaper told readers on July 31 that Edwards, in Washington for an AARP Foundation symposium on poverty and aging, avoided all press questions. Edwards previously said only that the National Enquirer, which claimed to catch him red-handed at a Los Angeles hotel visiting an alleged paramour, was “tabloid trash.”
Meanwhile, the Durham Herald Sun’s former editorial page editor urges the North Carolina press to further investigate, and Enquirer editor John Perel tells Radar Online: “No one will dictate the time table for when we release our unpublished material. We’ve been setting the agenda, and will continue doing so.”
Women’s Wear Daily released its 11th annual consumer brand-awareness survey, The WWD 100. What struck me was the year’s significant number of Web site launches/updates and store openings, and brands’ investment in marketing beyond advertising.
Did PR let John Thain’s credibility drop?
FierceFinance thinks the PR and IR folks at Merrill Lynch let its CEO, John Thain, make statements to the media he ultimately couldn’t back up, damaging his credibility. The theory is based on this MarketWatch story, which says that some of Thain’s comments over past months have contradicted the recent announcement that Merrill will sell $8.5 billion in stocks and take big write-downs.
One of the takeaways from this year’s NIRI conference was that communication within organizations (and with IROs) needs to be stepped up in order to get the full and accurate picture out to the media, investors, and other audiences. I’d also direct readers to our financial roundtable (sub req’d), which featured both IR and PR pros talking about all sorts of communications, including the comms coming from the CEO. Tough times and heightened scrutiny calls for tight messages.
Former White House press secretary turned best selling author Scott McClellan set off another round of outrage when he told Hardball host Chris Matthews that part of the Bush Administration’s messaging strategy during his tenure was the funneling of favorable talking points to friendly TV commentators, naming Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly.
McClellan qualified the statement, reported by TVNewswer, by saying, “I think that happens both ways when people go on other networks that are favorable to Democrats.”
MSNBC host Keith Olbermann expressed shock – shock! – at the tactic, while O’Reilly, with typical meekness, called McClellan “idiot,” adding, “He wants to sell his stupid book.”
Senior women: 2008’s ‘soccer moms,’ Penn says
“Active grannies” could be the key voter demographic in this year’s presidential election, writes Burson-Marsteller CEO (and former Clinton advisor) Mark Penn in the Politico.
Social security and healthcare are two important issues for this group, who wield particular influence in battle states such as Ohio and Florida. And those issues have not been much discussed of late on the campaign trail.
“And they are not going to vote for an older candidate just because of his age — if anything, they may vote for a candidate who reminds them of their children rather than themselves,” Penn writes.
Everything is getting pinched
The economic doom and gloom continues. This story from Friday’s basically sums up all of the major issues ailing the economy: housing sales, mortgages, problems with the banks. From my perspective, there are two things that really stand out here.
First is the fact that Washington Mutual had to make two public statements in about a week. Here’s the first, which talks about the bank’s liquidity position; the second announces the $3.3 billion second quarter losses.
The second is the various ways in which one set of economic circumstances affects other circumstances. was published over the weekend, talking about the far-reaching implications of lowered bonuses on Wall Street. Not only does it mean less money for the workers themselves, but fewer jobs, less taxes for the city, and less spending with retailers, particularly specialty retailers. It goes without saying that the economy has been hurting everyone, but the ways in which the hurt is being felt continue to surprise.
We have a PRWeek Twitter feed these days. You can follow us at . During the seven minutes a day it works. Kidding!
If consumers are truly upset about the of The New Yorker – you know, the one depicting, satirically, Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) and his wife Michelle as radicals – they aren’t showing their displeasure with their wallets.
Parent company Conde Nast can barely keep copies of the issue on newsstands, according to the New York Post’s Keith J. Kelly, who reports that preliminary estimates show single-copy sales are up 80% to 75,000 copies, over the average of 43,000.
Adding to Twitter’s series of technical difficulties, yesterday the site somehow dropped many of its users’ followers/followings. I talked to Twitter co-founder Biz Stone about how he’s dealing with the firestorm in the about the missing followers. For one, he says, because the site doesn’t work with a PR agency, it relies almost entirely on its and Twitter updates to inform users about what’s going on.
One user told PRWeek after alerting Twitter that she had lost followers, she received a “please be patient” response from tech support but not much other information. When asked about this somewhat canned response, Stone said, “We can only tell users what we know…as soon as we investigated it and found that it was [caused by] an error during our database upgrade, we sent out a note telling people what was happening.”
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