House PR's 'Tweets for Tickets' BRIT Awards PR Disaster

Naughty pee-arr company House PR apparently offered (UK) Telegraph journalist Tim Walker Brit Awards press accreditation in exchange for publishing promotional tweets with the Mastercard Twitter handle and its #PricelessSurprises hashtag. The email requested Walker publish tweets before, during and after the event, and guarantee Mastercard’s inclusion in any post event write-ups, both print and online, with hashtags and URLs included. #PricelessSurprises
In the spirit of PR fellowship and PR disaster recovery assistance, I can offer HousePR some coincidentally hot-off-the-press pointers here:
TimWalkerTweet (H/t to Ken Garner and The Drum)

PR Disasters 2013 – nominations and data flowing in

Reviewing the candidates and numbers for 2013’s Annual PR Disasters Awards is proving challenging; the feeling is that sport may very much dominate the field rather than previous years which saw government and corporate PR disasters abound. Just to whet your appetite, prospective candidates (in no particular order yet) for the Awards include:
Political expense abuse claims
Tom Waterhouse/Gai Waterhouse/John Singleton snafu
Essendon Bombers* performance drug scandal
MP Geoff Shaw court and stakeholder skirmishes
Collingwood boss Eddie Maguire’s King Kong gaffe
Myer’s Bernie Brookes NDIS pronouncements
VW car recall
Australian government phone spy scandal with SBY
Mark Textor tweet
Cronulla Sharks doping allegations
Young political candidate media gaffes

What stands out for you as the Aussie PR blunder of the last year?

PR disaster as tweet exacerbates international diplomacy ructions

Revelations that Australian intelligence sources may have been bugging SBY and wife’s personal phones, the indignant reactions from the ‘phone tapee’s’, the bungling “all governments gather information” interview by Mr Abbott with the ABC’s dogged Leigh Sales and, most recently, the inopportune twitter-sniping from a political research firm owner, marks this as a PR disaster of national and international import.

Offensive Tweet sent by pollster firm CrosbyTextor principal Mark Textor

Offensive Tweet sent and deleted by pollster firm principal Mark Textor

NZ's 'Roast Busters' case takes more reputation scalps

Alerted by a vigilant PR disaster watcher (thanks JD) across the ditch, ongoing interest in a sleazy case by the media and citizens has resulted in greater PR problems for the Police and radio station, RadioLive.
The Roast Busters case centres around a group of young men who’ve shamelessly boasted online (via Twitter and Facebook) about taking advantage of drunk, underage girls who they intimate are ‘willing’ assaultees.
As interest in the case grew, the police came under fire for knowing of the incidents since 2011, yet being ineffective in taking interventive action. Whispers say one of the boys is the son of a police officer, too.
Now, as media explores the story further, advertisers are (temporarily, I’m certain) jumping ship from RadioLive after two of its presenters joked and quipped about the circumstances surrounding the alleged rapes. The story of the group has made international news, with media outlets in the US, UK and Australia covering it.
Emotional intelligence deficits again the source of another horrid PR disaster that, due to online coverage, will haunt all concerned for years to come.

General advice on a PR disaster almost hits 1million

As social media continues to prove problematic for organisations with suspect elements within their ranks, Australia’s Chief of Army has secured nigh universal salutes for his authoritative and impassioned new media message on YouTube. Watch it; it’s a triumph of scriptwriting craft, audience awareness, key message insertion and a no-BS delivery (tad wooden if I’m being uber-curmudgeonly). Corporate PRs and executives need to pay attention to how to weave these elements together – and how to harness social media to get the viral share effect – next time they have to front up to handle a social media or PR disaster.

Hubris and "social media fail" on menu at Amy's Baking Company

Scratching my head on this one at HuffPost: It’s either THE best “controversy marketing” stunt designed to get the eyes of the world media on a TV show featuring an Arizonan restaurant, or it’s the biggest PR clusterfunk I’ve seen on social for some time. (Anything related to cocky chef Gordon Ramsay is usually tinged with an element of high-profile raising, innit?)
The precis? The restaurant owner calling social commentators ‘pussies’, challenging them to fistfights, threatening hollow legal action – all backed by ‘God’s’ might – and now claiming their Facebook was hacked (possible I guess) and you have a recipe for a tasty PR disaster.

#BoycottMyer PR disaster has Bernie on the backfoot

Shooting-from-the-lip Myer CEO Bernie Brookes has caused a sorta social media stink by saying that Julia Gillard’s NDIS levy will impact retail spending (sic, at his stores). While mainstream media reports mostly on the social media ‘outrage’ (see Addictomatic coverage), Social Mention calculates that the coverage is three times more likely to be negative towards Myer and Brookes; others report a dip (surely temporary) in the Myer share price.

Social media seminar – where digital PR meets customer service

Sydneyside social media fans might want to consider an imminent (21/22 March), crisis-orientated social media training conference. It’s a “…must-attend for heads of service, consumer affairs leaders, emergency managers with an interest in stakeholder management, managers of contact centres and heads of complaints handling teams OR anyone who is responsible for customer interactions in times of crisis.”

2DayFM preggers prank now worse than a PR disaster

With the sad, sad news that 2DayFM’s ‘Crank Yanker’ style publicity stunt may have lead to the death of the reception nurse who took the hoax phone call, station owner Austereo now has a global PR disaster on its hands. Social media is reported to be ablaze with anger and revulsion at the prank, and the way the station is handling the fallout of the stunt; the company Facebook page has been swamped with critical posts and Twitter in the UK has trended heavily against the DJs Mel Greig and Michael Christian. Meanwhile, a braggadocio video from Mel and Michael puffed with pride just after their hoodwinking call has now been deleted from the station website. In any publicity-seeking situation, organisations have to ask “what’s the worse thing that could happen?”. While impossible to predict the death of someone involved in a hoax call, the sensitivity and protectiveness that exists for the UK’s royal cohort might have suggested this was one fear and self-loathing promoting scenario that required some taste and restraint. RIP Jacintha Saldanha.