Dirty PR tricks abound in corporate land

April 1, 2009

Surprising to see corporate giants Google popping their heads above the normal corporate PR messages today, with news that they have been defending accusations of dirty PR tricks in the ever-increasing war for Internet supremacy.

According to the Guardian, the online behemoth has been fighting off claims of a smear campaign against Privacy International over their concern around certain elements of the Street View tool which has gained so much media coverage recently.

It’s always a surprise when two corporates go head-to-head in this way – such as when Branson was fighting with Murdoch in the Press last year. The headlines and feature articles raged for…oooh, at least 6 days.

And, of course, it gave an inquisitive audience – which also happens to be target customers ie consumers – a perfect reason to investigate further into what exactly the fuss was all about by looking deeper into the Virgin offer at the time.

And today’s PR battle will open up further interest, debate, media attention and PR leverage for Google, and – possibly – for Privacy International too. They say that all PR is good PR. Not inclined to agree, especially when so much negative News is hitting the business Press at the moment. Try selling in a positive business story to the Nationals right now! May as well attempt to walk across the Thames in sandals.

It would be fantastic, however, to see the corporate egos rising above themselves, demonstrating they can take the higher moral ground, and maybe exercising something approaching that fabled business concept of collaboration?!

Now THAT would be a wonderful piece of PR for our doom-and-gloom times.


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