Kempner Swallows Blogola Whole While We All Gag

One of the greatest public relations skills is being able to discern ‘the wind.’ You may think you have a greatest argument in the world – you are so absolutely, totally, completely right  – and lose if it is the wrong argument. The ‘wind,’ blowing against you, will make you eat your words. Michael Kempner, CEO of MWW, if he is capable of separating reason from self-delusional PR, should soon feel that harsh wind blowing back at him following his ridiculous rant in favor of blogola for his client Nikon.

Says Kempner:

“The structure of the program is almost identical to how new products are introduced to print and broadcast journalists at The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NBC, CNN and virtually every other reputable news outlet you can think of. Why? Because we firmly believe that bloggers are, in many ways, journalists.”

Double bull, Michael. First, The New York Times would never accept a $1,000 camera on a 6 – 12 month ‘loan’ with the right to purchase it at a discount at the end of the ‘lease.’ If you even attempted that with a major news outlet they would probably never speak to you again. Second, the bloggers you sent cameras to are not top-tier “A” list bona fide journalists because they would be too savvy to accept blogola either. B and C list bloggers crave validation and the swag that can go with. If you didn’t think you could influence them, you wouldn’t do it.

It’s also a bad move, Michael, to be so condescending and dismissive of critics, especially when they have a valid point. Arrogance and self-righteousness do not serve the PR person well. In your mind you are right, we are wrong, and all criticism of your blogola program is born of jealousy and a “juvenile, poorly reasoned argument cloaked in false ethics.”

“[Says Kempner] It’s interesting that the loudest protesters of this program are individuals who weren’t invited to participate…It would appear that for some, not being included has suddenly fostered mock outrage and a pretense of higher ethical standards. I guess wounded pride can make some people act in a self serving and personally destructive manner.”

It’s seems that Kempner has taken a wrong turn off the highway to a land where everybody believes their own grandiose PR and is still dependent on the old payola influence game. Truth is that this is a tainted ‘campaign.’ Will anybody actually believe anything about the Nikon D80 that is said by MWW’s blogola recipients?

The MWW / Nikon blogola imbroglio is a stellar example of why PR agencies are failing at new media. You can’t graft new media and social media on to old processes. This is a whole new way of doing business. The old rules don’t apply. The old guys just don’t get it.

(Sorry there is no photo to go with this story but my Canon PowerShot – paid $240 cash – is not working.)

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