Tuesday, November 27, 2007


It is difficult to fight back in PR when an opponent uses misdirection. In a case we're working on, an activist group mis-characterized a technological function as invasion of privacy and called for regulation of it in a manner that misses what the function is. The activists made their proposition sound simple when it is anything but. The group wrapped itself in truth, justice and right but threatens to wreck an industry that benefits millions.

How does one fight back against that? With facts presented as clearly and as cogently as possible. That, of course, is not as easy as the misdirection because the real story is complicated. However, there is no gain in fighting simple wrong with complex fact. The public doesn't listen. The challenge, then, is to simplify accurately a story that resists it. It's an interesting task that takes honing of logical steps from point to point, but, if done right, the message explains itself. The key is to start with concepts that everyone accepts and to move into ideas that no one yet grasps and to make the transition as painless as possible. That is easy to write but difficult to achieve.


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