Friday, January 14, 2005

Three cheers for Elliot Sloane

Talking Points Memo points to PRWeek’s coverage of the Ketchum imbroglio:

NEW YORK: Sloane & Company CEO Elliot Sloane withdrew his agency's membership in the Council of PR Firms Wednesday following Council president Kathy Cripps' comments defending Ketchum in a New York Times story.

"The reaction of the Council... disappointed me, because I would expect that the trade organization that represents our industry would be more forceful in talking about guidelines, roles and responsibilities, and ethics," Sloane said.

In the Times article published Wednesday, Cripps said that Ketchum's contract to promote the "No Child Left Behind" act by paying a commentator $240,000 did not violate the Council's code of ethics because the onus for full disclosure rested on Armstrong Williams, not the agency.

By contrast, PRSA president Judith Phair called Ketchum's situation "a shame, disturbing and harmful."

"The Council does not represent my firm's views, our thinking, or the thinking, potentially, of many others in the industry," said Sloane.

It all goes back to what I said before, the news is not for sale.

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