From: 'Amanda Chapel'
Sent: Wed, 7-25-07, 11:58 AM
To: Janet Tyler, President, Airfoil; Andy Getsey, Co–founder/CEO, Atomic PR; Margery Kraus, President/CEO, APCO Worldwide; Neal Cohen, CEO/North America, APCO Worldwide; Brad Staples, CEO/Europe, APCO Worldwide; John Bliss, Principal, Bliss, Gouverneur & Associates; Andrea Coville, CEO, Brodeur; Harry Burson, Burson-Marsteller; Mark Penn, President & CEO, Burson Marsteller; Ken Eudy, CEO, Capstrat; Doug Spong, President, Carmichael Lynch Spong; Joel Curran, SVP and managing director, CKPR; Jens Bang, President/CEO, Cone; Andy Cooper Principal, CooperKatz & Company, Inc.; Thomas Coyne, President/CEO, Coyne PR; Barbara Bates, Co-Founder and Principal, Eastwick; Elaine Cummings, Co-Founder and Principal, Eastwick; Richard Edelman, CEO, Edelman PR; Rick Murray, President, Me2Revolution; David Brain, CEO Europe, Edelman PR; Dave Senay, CEO, Fleishman-Hillard Inc.; Lisa Sepulveda, CEO, Euro RSCG Magnet; Declan Kelly, President & CEO, Financial Dynamics; Cos M. Mallozzi, President and CEO, Gibbs & Soell PR; Fred Cook, President and CEO, Golin/Harris International; Greg Matusky, president, Gregory FCA Communications; Paul Taaffe, CEO, Hill and Knowlton; Sabrina Horn, President, Horn Group; Shannon Latta, Partner, Horn Group; Kevin Lynch, principal and founding partner, HLB Communications; David Gallagher, CEO, Ketchum/London; Chris Lewis, CEO, Lewis PR; Ken Makovsky, President Makovsky + Company; Margaret Booth, President, M Booth & Associates; Mark Hass, CEO, Manning Selvage & Lee; Michael Kempner, CEO, MWW Group; Tim Dyson, CEO, Next Fifteen; Marcia Silverman, CEO, Ogilvy PR Worldwide; Lynn Casey, CEO, Padilla Speer Beardsley; Steve Cody, Managing Partner & Co-Founder, Peppercom; Helen Ostrowski, CEO, Porter Novelli; Michael Petruzzello, Managing Partner, Qorvis; Peter Finn, CEO, Ruder Finn; Steve Schwartz, President and CEO, Schwartz Communications; Todd Defren, Principal, SHIFT Communications; Marc Hausman, President and CEO, Strategic Communications; Tony Signore, CEO, Taylor; Aedhmar Hines, CEO, Text 100; Lou Hoffman, President, The Hoffman Agency; Tony Sapienza, Partner, Topaz Partners; Paula Slotkin, Partner, Topaz Partners; Richard Cline, Founder and President, Voce Communications; Frank Shaw, President, Waggener Edstrom Worldwide; Harris Diamond, CEO, Weber Shandwick; Scott Widmeyer, Chairman, Widmeyer Communications, Inc.; Joe Clayton, President & CEO, Widmeyer Communications
Subject: An Open Letter to the Leadership of the PR Industry
Where are you?!! Listen... we had a Call to Action last week where we invited a number of you here to a critical debate about the future of our business. Not one showed up.
WELL, WE'RE ABSOLUTELY OUTRAGED! While there's a growing cancer in our industry, you (plural) seem bent on lining your pockets almost exclusively. Regrettably, a number of your peers are involved in activities that will surely kill our business. And when it goes to hell and you make off with your millions, we are the ones who will be left holding the bag.
Here... connect these dots: Edelman is out doing back flips trying to reduce us to direct marketers; the president of one of the leading "PR 2.0" firms says he cannot see a difference between PR and advertising anymore; there's a whole sub culture now in our business that's presently throwing communications expertise out the window and replacing it with base SEO techniques; you've got Hines proselytizing that we embrace the cartoon that is Second Life; you've got Kempner leading the way for us to legitimize blog bribery. And how 'bout the mainstream biz? You've got Torossian boasting about Girls Gone Wild, taking us from the "lying profession" to porn marketing services. It's unbelievable.
It all raises two simple questions: What won't you do for a dollar? Or preferably, when will you stand up?
Bottom line, the business has never been more pathetic and you are endorsing it with your silence. Used to be that once a year or so a major paper would variously satirize us; today, on Strumpette, there's something daily. Frankly, we cannot keep up.
IT'S TIME FOR A CHANGE! Help us end the silence. Speak up now or forever hold you peace. We invite you to join us the concerned majority in an effort to reestablish the respected professional discipline of PR. No more obfuscation. We'd like each of you to stand up and show your support and especially your smarts.
TELL US! What should we do and how do you personally plan to lead us there?
Posted by an Honored Guest Saturday, April 21, 2007
Got a lovely card from a fan today. CORRECTION: we got a wonderfully artsy postcard from the Tate along with a letter from someone of whom which we happen to be huge fans! Smart, young, creative, gutsy, irreverent... we just LOVE Topaz Partners' Adam Zand. He's the best.
Anyway, thought we'd share it (with Adam's permission, of course).
Greetings from London. I am here on holiday. Taking in the Tate Modern with my son. Thinking of you.
We're sitting here at the Tate cafe 1/2 way through the super cool Gilbert and George retrospective: the staff is a Brazilian woman telling her Italian assistant the word "fired." Gosh, if they only knew how I've felt at work over the years ;-). We strike up conversation about Italy's World Cup win and Brazil's dip like we've known each other for years. Apparently, football (that's soccer for you Yanks) is the international language.
FYI: I just realized my son playing Sims Pets on his Nintendo DS is a small, but important work of art. After all, in the limited time since we entered the museum, he has built an avatar, furnished a house, showered, shit (Gilbert and George scatological reference), bought and cared for a dog and got a job at a pet clinic. Who says kids aren't productive and task oriented?
Anyway, the rest of our trip has been very exciting.
I spent time on Tuesday with David Brain, president and CEO of Edelman, Europe. Chit chat involves his team's loss (Manchester City - so much cooler than supporting Manchester United a.k.a. ManUre or Scum to us Liverpool supporters) to Arsenal (bit of a cheeky name) the previous night. He has a mystery present for my son. First glimpse looks like a red shirt (maybe a simple local t-shirt?), but wait, it's a replica jersey with my son's favorite player 6 foot 7 Peter Crouch in miraculously red poly Liverpool shirt. What an amazingly thoughtful, generous gift. Whatever notions I may have had about the reputation and personality of Edelman are gone.
In closing, I'll leave you with a lovely quote that speaks to overpaid and under-worked artists (and PR people):
THE LAWS OF SCULPTORS:
1. Always be smartly dressed, well groomed relaxed friendly polite and in complete control;
2. Make the world to believe in you and pay heavily for this privilege;
3. Never worry assess discuss or criticize but remain quiet respectful and calm;
4. The lord chissels still, so don't leave your bench for long.
-- Gilbert and George, 1969
On Thursday, March 8, 2007 at 7:41 AM, Ronn Torossian, President and CEO of 5WPR, emphatically promised that he was going to sue us. No real reason, he was just irritated by our teasing him about getting in bed with pornographer Joe Francis. Anyway, Ronn gave his obscenity-laced word that we'd see the complaint in 72 hours. It's now late by
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