Friday, January 27, 2006

Does Size Matter?

I am a fan of great big stuff.

Do you need a big pair of scissors for a ribbon-cutting? An 18-inch tall giant alarm clock that really works? A gavel as big as the your boss' ego? Giant boxing gloves for a "showdown" between management and their employees at the company picnic? A baseball hat big enough to sit on for the next fundaraiser?

I had so many ideas just looking at this site than I have time to share. Thanks to my colleague Fran Stephenson for pointing it out to me.

So, get a big ice cream cone, sit back, and let the BIG ideas flow.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

PRSA Strongly Objects to Undisclosed Paid Endorsements

Yesterday, the Public Relations Society of America Advocacy Committee issued an statement about paid media endorsements, such as the one purported to have been made to Audrey Lewis (a freelance writer whose articles appeared in The Birmingham Times) by Richard M. Scrushy, the former chief executive of HealthSouth, through her public relations firm the Lewis Group. It says, among other things that:

PRSA strongly objects to any paid endorsement that is not fully disclosed as such and is presented as objective news coverage. Such practices are clearly contrary to the PRSA Member Code of Ethics, which requires that public relations professionals engage in open, honest communications and fully disclose sponsors or financial interests involved in any paid communications activities. We encourage all public relations professionals to follow the responsible and ethical practice of public relations as outlined by our Code of Ethics.

Kudos to PRSA for standing firm on the principles of the PRSA Code of Ethics. Here is the New York Times article about the scandal (free subscription required)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Finding PR Blogs - Getting Started

The recently started Daily Dog newsletter delivers up-to-date public relations news headlines in a daily e-mail that gives links to the Website to read more.

Last week, the Daily Dog added a PR blog roundup called The Blog Run to its daily offerings.

It is a great way to sample the more than 330 public relations blogs out there without becoming overwhelmed. You can also visit Pub Subs PR List to see which are the most popular blogs on any given day.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Online Rumor Empties Warren High School

Recently, I posted about a rumor on my blog Communication Overtones that led to the second tragedy at Sago Mine which left family members believing that their loved ones were alive when indeed they were not. This rumor was thought to be spread primarily by cellphone.

There are also many more examples of how rumor can make a huge impact in a crisis event.

At the PRSA San Antonio monthly luncheon on January 5, 2005, Pascual Gonzalez, principal spokesperson for the Northside Independent School District and the San Antonio chapter’s PR Professional of the Year, gave a crowd of over 60 PR practioners an idea of how pervasive a rumor can be.

In early October (before I was a blogger), a rumor posted at the popular social networking site warned of an imminent shooting at Warren High School in San Antonio, Texas.

The school was effectively shut down for two days because many of its 3,000 students refused to return.

I live behind the school, so I followed the story with some interest.

A handful of students were believed to be involved with the spread of the rumor. However, there wasn't a real threat – just some influential kids talking.

This shows us that a very few influential people, in this case a “handful” of students with a myspace web page (which includes a blog and linking capabilities through its “My Friend Space”), can move an entire population of 3,000 students and their parents to take immediate action.

This is also a good case study of the power of social media.

Not to keep harping on the Tipping Point, but this is Gladwell’s “rule of the few” in action.

The school successfully worked with to get the rumor taken off of the site.

Here is the story and the editorial about this incident at the San Antonio Express-News.

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Welcome to PRSA San Antonio Blog

We are excited to start this blog to communicate more effectively about public relations in San Antonio, Texas, and to advocate for the PR profession.

You can find out more about PRSA San Antonio and information about upcoming events at our Website.

We will have a team of PR Bloggers to update this site. So, if you are a PRSA member in San Antonio and you want to joing the blogging team, just let us know by posting in the comments section. Be sure to fill in your e-mail address.