Wednesday, December 01, 2010

There's a PR Code of Ethics? Really?

Former PR man, now insurance-industry whistleblower Wendell Potter writes about an altercation with a current PR man whom he advises to check out, holy cow, a code of ethics? For the PR industry?

I will accept Richard Edelman's word that nothing short of honest and accurate communications are now tolerated at his firm. That's wonderful news. Now that that is indeed the case, I am inviting Mr. Edelman and other leaders in the profession to join me in finding ways to strengthen and enforce the code of ethics developed by the Public Relations Society of America, of which I have been a member (an accredited member at that) for three decades. That code, by the way, states that PR people must "be honest and accurate in all communications" and "avoid deceptive practices" and "reveal the sponsors for causes and interests represented (in other words, no fake grassroots, flogs or front groups, please)," and "decline representation of clients or organizations that urge or require actions contrary to this code."
Jeez, seems kinda like asking butchers not to use knives.

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