Fall #4

This week I chaired a panel of three editors and executives from three very different news outlets – Oregon Public Broadcasting, the (Klamath Falls) Herald and News, and Por Más Tiempo, the biggest media cooperative of Argentina which publishes Tiempo Argentino – as they discussed how their newsrooms are transforming for the ongoing digital revolution. I had pitched attending the panel to my J452 PR students because I thought they might be curious, from a media relations standpoint, how newsrooms are changing. While the panel discussion focused on journalism rather than public relations, I was struck by how much of what they said had PR overtones. In short, they talked about using digital opportunities to build and maintain relationships with audiences and to define their brand identities. Jan Boyd, director of digital strategy and community engagement at OPB, spoke of how breaking a news story into component parts and pushing it out on various platforms based on audience research was about telling the right story with the right channel at the right time to the right audience, something SOJC’s PR area director Kelli Matthews says when she defines PR. So see, students, I’m not kidding when I say the PR angles are everywhere. And here’s your weekly insPiRation to prove it:

Foreign Policy…
Russia Welcomes Growing Wave of ‘Red Tourists’ From China (The Wall Street Journal)
Discuss how straining East-West ties are playing out in unexpected ways, changing Chinese perception of fashionable tourism. How have Chinese and Russian leaders used foreign policy to shore up tourism, a key economic driver? Is there anything Western powers can do to repair their image as an attractive tourist destination for Chinese travelers?

Colin Kaepernick: ‘There’s Nothing That Anybody’s Going to Say That’s Going to Change How I Feel About These Issues’ (The Undefeated)
A lot has been written about Colin Kaepernick’s pre-game protests. But how do you think his image might change if more news outlets carried this larger story, about how ongoing commitment to youth of color and these issues? What’s your take on his statement that “these issues exist whether or not football exists…football just allows a platform to have conversations on a greater extent about these issues”? Do you think the media isn’t telling the story that many fans may respect him for his social stance?

Ad & PR…
Wells Fargo Launches Ad Campaign to Earn Back Customer Trust (Housingwire)
The perfect intersection of ad and PR: an ad campaign specifically focused on repairing a damaged relationship with a company/brand’s key public. Will it work? How could Wells Fargo’s PR department mesh its strategy with the ad department’s strategy here?

Typewriter belonging to SOJC Journalism Instructor Charlie Butler. Thanks, Charlie, for letting me photograph it in your office.


55,000 Blood Donors Exposed Online in Red Cross Data Breach (Mashable)
What do you think of the Australian Red Cross’s PR strategy in this crisis communications incident? With data breaches becoming more and more common will donors be more willing to accept the ARC’s claims of accepting responsibility than they might have before similar situations at Target and other businesses in the recent past? Why is safeguarding donor privacy specifically important for the Red Cross to continue its mission?

Cosmetics & Skin Care (and Entertainment… and Music…)
Is Skin-Care the New Designer Collaboration? (Allure)
Why are musicians and other celebrities jumping on the skin care bandwagon (besides money)? Why do celebrities (including Smokey Robinson) need to be lifestyle-brand oriented now for their image? If you are a serious skin care aficionado are you more or less likely to trust a skin care label named after a celebrity?

Entertainment… music..
Amy Schumer Responds to Criticism of Her Contentious ‘Formation’ Video (Mashable)
What do you think of Amy Schumer’s response from a PR standpoint? Beyonce reportedly supports Schumer’s move – why? Is she likely to alienate her key publics – why or why not? If you were the PR person for Goldie Hawn or other celebs in the video what would your PR response strategy be? How is handling PR regarding comedy different than PR otherwise?

Tesla, Once Beloved By Critics, Ranks Near Bottom of New Consumer Reports Survey (The Washington Post)
How will this new rating impact Tesla – will it alienate loyal buyers? What do you think (from a PR standpoint) of Tesla’s and Musk’s response to Consumer Reports? Beyond power lock issues, how will the controversy over self-driving features affect Tesla’s standing with key publics (regulators, consumers, investors)?

11 Ways To Take a Better Food Photo on Instagram (The New York Times)
How can PR pros who work in the food industry use these tips to help clients? How has Instagram changed the game for food PR?

The Funfetti Explosion (The New York Times)
“Swelled by nostalgia and social media…” – this is a case study in how social media is changing our culinary habits. So discuss. What does this mean for food PR, especially for the little guy/gal?

Schizophrenia Awareness Just Got Fashionable Thanks to This Clothing Line (Mashable)
Can clothing “dispel stigma and spread awareness” of social causes? Do you think most people will flock to this line – or is it trying to reach a slice of the fashionable public?

Yoga Pants Fight Back! Women Protest Sexist Letter Saying They Shouldn’t Wear Yoga Pants in Public (Yoga Dork)
From a PR standpoint, what do you think of the Yoga Parade? Do you think it was an appropriate response? How do you think yoga clothing companies might capitalize on the fact that these women find athlesiure empowering, especially when many yoga clothing companies (such as lululemon) are in hot water for comments about women’s bodies in yoga pants or for not featuring diverse body types in their ads?


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