Army PR disaster shows Facebook’s downside as PR tool

Again and again I say that I’m not a fan of Facebook for organisations with contentious public profiles or business activities, and I’m equally leery when those organisations have staff who may not have developed sensitivity or discretion about how and what they may post on such a visible platform as Facebook. When this happens, it’s little wonder that social media becomes PR disaster fodder. So when an org like the Aussie Army tries to “get with it” re social media, it should surprise no-one that the content of that page should contain racist, sexist and prejudiced comments from soldiers who, let’s generalise, ain’t typically the world’s most sensitive or poetic souls. Memo to Army and other forces; think of the strategy and rationale of why you use any given platform; brainstorm the possible downsides; pick a platform that best suits purpose of the strategy; and pre-engagement, do extensive staff briefings about their responsibilities when using these social platforms. Next!

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One Response to Army PR disaster shows Facebook’s downside as PR tool

  1. Gerry says:

    “Jon Mask” has sent in a comment to opine that the “…facebook page you refer to above was not set up by the army nor has it got anything to do with the army except that you had to have been a member of a certain part of the army to join the page. It wasn’t intended to be anything remotely like PR…”
    Despite childishly calling me a name and opining I’m talking rot – though he does sign off with a curt Good Bye – Jon misses the point that bad PR can be sustained on social media whether any site or presence is truly representative or official or otherwise; my point is to counsel Orgs to be more vigilant as to who is talking about and for them, and to brief those who are seen as reputational foot soldiers that their individual actions can have impact on the bigger brand entity (in this case, the Army).

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