Tuesday, September 27, 2011


One wonders how editors get away with this -- recycling articles in their magazines.  When you own the barrel of ink, you have privileges.  Imagine, if you will, if a PR practitioner recycled his pitches to the same reporters year after year.  It might work until the reporters catch on, then there would be little chance the practitioner would sell a story again.  There is such a thing as recycling an idea whose time has come.  I've done that a lot.  One brings an idea to a reporter who turns it down.  As events develop, one resurrects the idea and presents it again.  The reporter accepts it.  

There are evergreen ideas that never get old, such as how to save energy around the house, but reporters and editors understand the need to circulate these ideas repeatedly for readers who didn't get them or need them the first time.  One assumes, however, that they write a new article each time.  Picking up copy and running it again seems tacky, but how can one accuse Martha Stewart of being tacky?

Public relations practitioners have developed a negative reputation for some as a result of the wide variety of tasks that they are required to accomplish, often despite their best interests. Having to do a lot of the "dirty work" for companies and other public figures, they often need to go about their work in an out-of-the-box way, sometimes having to go around common business tactics in order to do so. That being said, a true and honest public relations practitioner would never recycle their work in a mass produced way. One of the most important aspects of public relations is networking, which is successfully done by individualized and personalized attention, especially when it comes to pitching and sending out press releases. It would like a death wish for a pr practitioner's profession to be caught recycling their work year after year. For a publication, especially one as well known as Martha Stewart's that employs a large staff working on her magazine to be recycling articles and even pictures for a specialized, seasonal publication is humiliating for her brand and reputation. It is so mind blowing that not only would they do that, but that they would use the same material from only three years prior. If this had to happen one would think they would at least use work from a longer published time ago.

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