Following a long line of public figures who have deployed kids to try and win the sympathy vote in public opinion – think UK’s John ‘Mad Cow’ Gummer and Aussies Matt Brown, Andrew Bartlett and John Hewson – thugby player Greg Bird recently arrived at court dragging his little brother (maybe about 5yrs old?) through a media scrum. His sister also ported their other baby brother to try keeping media snappers at bay. Accused of ‘glassing’ his American girlfriend’s face with a wine glass, Bird’s media advisers (lawyers or PR people we wonder?) clearly felt he needed to soften his image as this sports PR disaster unfolds. Bird’s girlfriend suffered cuts and a fractured eye socket after allegedly being hit in the face with a glass wielded by Bird himself. He denies the assault and blamed a pro-golfer mate.
Ever fond of hoary old sayings this weather, I’ll bastardise another; “character isn’t revealed when things are going well, but how you behave when things are going badly”. Greg from an older PR pro; ditch the entourage and the media manipulation. Face these allegations directly, with integrity and, if appropriate, with contrition. That’s the only way to bring this unseemly PR disaster to a close, and rebuild your much tarnished reputation.