Time to Eat Crow

by Roger Pynn

“Consumer Warrior” Clark Howard owes public relations people everywhere – as well as consumers who rely on his usually solid judgement – an apology for the slur he threw out this afternoon as part of a story about AT&T’s decision to beef up support for the network that exclusively enables the iPhone.

Clark, since you started out the story by noting it is sometimes healthy to have to eat crow (as did AT&T brass in this case), let’s see how well you enjoy a taste of it yourself. You may want to start by telling the public relations people at AT&T that you didn’t mean to slander them when you said they are supposed to “put a spin on things and not let the story get out.”

And the rest of us who work on behalf of clients and employers to create positive two-way communications with stakeholders and serve as the watchdogs of their reputations would be happy to put some mustard on that crowburger for you.

The audacity to paint a whole profession with that brush surprised me from someone with a normally balanced outlook. How would you like it if someone suggested that all radio show hosts engage in the same sort of slime as Howard Stern?

Check the Code of Ethics of the Public Relations Society of America, Clark.

Good public relations practitioners tell their clients that actions speak louder than words and good words always follow honest action. I’m sure I’ll have plenty of nice things to say about Clark Howard when he’s finished eating.

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