PR/Media Week-in-Review, 07/27/08

Jew on Jew ViolenceMark Rose PR Week In Review July 29, 2007

My first day in grade school at P.S. 244 (correction: it’s P.S. 277) in Gerritsen Beach, Brooklyn, a tall Irish thug named Patrick Selkirk introduced himself by sharing his favorite joke: “What’s the fastest means of transportation?” asked Patrick. I shrugged. “Throw a penny and hop on a Jews back,” he said and Patrick and his gang of thugs cracked up and boasted of making raids into ‘Jewland’ (neighboring Marine Park) to beat up on kids like me. Patrick and his boys made good on those boasts.  Enticing and evading the Irish gangs was a favorite activity back then until we developed our own brand of thuggery, albeit much more subtle.

This cogitation on race, religion and prejudice is precipitated by the reaction to Loren Feldman’s TechNigga and Salaam E. Baloney web videos. Is Loren, a Jew, crossing a line when he mocks blacks in his videos? Yes, argues Shannon Whitley in his blog this week. Shannon is a social media maven and professed Feldman fan but he believes that it is not acceptable to perpetuate racial stereotypes under the guise of humor (the Sarah Silverman conundrum).

Born to Kvetch by Michael WexI don’t believe that anyone is without prejudice. Jesse Jackson was caught revealing a snippet of his true feelings about Barack Obama.  Imagine his unvarnished feelings about the Jews in ‘Hymietown’ (Jew York) who are constantly berating him? That’s okay. I haven’t understood a word Jesse Jackson has said in 20 years. He sounds like his mouth is running on three batteries when it requires four.  Leno and Letterman and O’Brien and their ilk should have a field day with Jesse Jackson – but would that cross the line?

I don’t believe that there is a line to cross in free speech. As long as you are not inciting physical harm – or  mocking Jews – then you’re okay. And that’s where Shannon has a point when he asks “We don’t tolerate non-Jewish people making Jewish jokes, do we?  I can’t recall anyone successfully doing that since the ’70s.”

To answer that question I turn to Loren Feldman and his classic video Guy Kawasaki Is An Asshole (caution: extreme foul language). Loren is incensed that Guy mentions in his bio that he learned to sell from Jews. The implication is that Loren and I can kibbutz all day long about cheap Jews controlling the media but let ‘somebody else’ insinuate a stereotype and we’re ready to wage war.

I like Loren, Sarah Silverman, Chris Rock, Dr. Dre, Eminem and the kids in my neighborhood who nigga this and nigga that all day long (the other day these two black kids were talking about ‘this Chinese nigga’ and this ‘Korean nigga’ – what’s that about?). And why is it that a bunch of educated white guys are debating this? Where are the black tech bloggers?

Photo above left is from Born To Kvetch: Yiddish Language and Culture in All Its Moods , a wonderful book by Michael Wex. I love this picture because it perfectly captures the petulant, angry, intellectually tortured Jew that embodys all Jewish men from birth to death.

PR/Media Scan

Is this a Joke? PR girl selected to be face of industry. What does the face of the “face” of the UK PR industry look like?  We don’t know since the story in the UK’s North Norfolk News has no photo. What did the “face” do to deserve this honor? She was involved in a PR campaign and is being promoted by CIPR (Chartered Institute of Public Relations) for their 60th anniversary. Says “the face”: ‘One of the slogans of the campaign is “been there, done that, got the T-shirt’ and I’m photographed showing off my CIPR T-shirt. I think a lot of people have been rather disappointed that they’re not actually available to buy!’ “The face” is studying for a CIPR Diploma in Public Relations. What do CIPR and PRSA have in common? Both are lousy at public relations.
 The New York Yankees beat the Boston Red Sox at Fenway park, the first two games of a three game series. Yeah!

MyPRGenie was unveiled this week. A real PR Genie would hand you two national placements to impress your boss so you could get him off your ass for a couple of days so you could do nothing but watch re-runs of the Yankees beating the Red Sox at Fenway.

REVIEW EXCERPT WSJ: The term “public diplomacy” was coined in the 1960s but refers to an age-old ambition: to sway popular opinion in a foreign country. The Catholic Church called it “propaganda” and considered it God’s work. In the 1920s, Edward Bernays linked it with public relations and advertising, hatching the idea that national ideals could be marketed like products. When Stalin and Hitler twisted propaganda into mass brainwashing, it acquired a bad odor, and liberal democracies swore never to use it again. Unless, of course, they had to. — From The Art of Global Public Relations - Wall Street Journal book review, 7/24. 


  1. Liam FitzPatrick says:

    Intrigued by your comment that the CIPR is crap at PR based on a story in an obscure local newspaper that clearly has a sub-editor with a twisted sense of irony….

    There’s a lot to complain about professional associations and it does seem to be a favourite occupation for most professionals – no matter what the profession. But I do think we get the professional associations we deserve – why snipe at a body that’s trying to raise standards, with little funding and no control over the profession?

    Isn’t it better to applaud attempts to improve the education of practitioners (big tick for the CIPR there), gain recognition for professionals (another tick for a body that worked pretty hard to gain the same status as other professionals such as lawyers, accountants and medics) and provide a forum for professionals around the world to debate the contribution they make to development and peace.

    Maybe the CIPR is crap at PR in a remote corner of England where a big cabbage normally counts as frontpage news. But it does sound a bit odd hearing a kneejerk prejudice from someone who has just spent ages debating what are the acceptable boundaries of racism…


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