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Fri, 2006-08-04 13:14Kevin Grandia
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ABC News: Gore spoof video linked to Republican/Exxon Spinster

ABC news is reporting that a popular YouTube.com video mocking Al Gore's Inconvenient Truth, first purported to be created by a 29-year old, was actually created by the PR firm, DCI Group. ABC also rightly reports that the infamous climate change “skeptic” funder ExxonMobil is a DCI client. Coincidently, the DCI group  is responsible for the creation of “Tech Central Station,” a forum for climate change deniers that just so happens to have received funding directly from Exxon for so-called “climate change support.”

Exxon denies they had anyting to do with the video and ABC reports a DCI representative as stating:

“We do not disclose the names of our clients, nor do we discuss the work we do on behalf of our clients.”

This is yet another in a long list of examples of underhanded PR spin being used to attack the scientific consensus on climate change - it is also an extremely amateurish and immature example of PR in general. DCI's unwillingness to disclose the client footing the bill for this sad little video means they're probably raring up for some damage control on this one. This is a bad PR move on the part of DCI, by covering up their client they are only drawing more attention to the story and making themselves and Exxon look all that more guilty.

Of course, questionable PR tactics by DCI are not surprising, when you consider that DCI's current CEO, Doug Goodyear, was also heavily involved as a PR consultant in RJ Reynold's efforts to manufacture a grassroots campaign against tougher tobacco laws.

I guess when it comes to PR and climate change, we just have to keep “smoking” these guys out of their holes. Sorry, bad pun, had to be done.

Fri, 2006-08-04 09:47Kevin Grandia
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Warning: Climate porn is bad for you

The Institute for Public Policy Research, a UK-based think tank, issued areport yesterday warning environmentalists and communicaters to stay away from alarmist language that may be causing more harm than good when it comes to getting the message across about global warming.

The IPPR report is just another in a series of reports and research urging envrionmentalists and those who want real action on climate change to re-think the way we communicate the issue to the public. In any public relations campaign, there is always a real danger of creating an unwanted or opposite effect from what is intended. If the PR program you design is not grounded in thorough research, usually in the form of such things as polling and focus groups, you will always be in the dark about what the actual effects are of your program are.

In the case of the IPPR report, the authors, a linguist and a textual analyst, make the sound argument that alarmist language can elicit an effect more akin to “climate porn,” than a call to arms by the citizenry to tackle global warming. In other words, many public interest groups assume that melting glaciers and heat waves will scare people to action, when in fact it has the opposite effect of people tuning out the message they are trying to get across. PR professionals have known this for years, but much like smoking, we all know that alarmism is bad for us, but many of us continue to do it anyways.
Wed, 2006-08-02 16:18Kevin Grandia
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California "skeptical" of skeptics

The National Post, Canada's second national newspaper, ran a column today written by Steve “the Junkman” Milloy. The guest editorial attacks the State of California's request for General Motors, DaimlerChrysler and the Association of Automobile Manufacturers to disclose financial payments made to many of the more notorious climate change “skeptic.”

Milloy, a climate change “skeptic” himself,  is appalled that such documents should be exposed, and it sounds like GM et al. will be this fighting this one tooth and nail.

While Milloy is trying to spin this as an attempt to “silence the skeptics,” reporting of funding sources by scientists is also a matter of full disclosure and allows a fuller context to the information the public uses to make decisions on important issues like climate change.
Tue, 2006-08-01 10:40Kevin Grandia
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Bush: forget climate change, I got breakfast with Jeb



Breakfast with Jeb

The State of California and the United Kingdom agreed to a pact yesterday to create a carbon trading market as a means of pushing the development of new green technologies and battling global warming. UK Prime Minister Tony Blair and Califonia's Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger will also look to enhance the sharing of knowledge in the areas of economic and scientific research as it relates to climate change.

As reported widely
, neither US President George Bush or his top enviro-advisor, James Connaughton, were able to attend due to “scheduling conflicts.”
Thu, 2006-07-27 08:54Kevin Grandia
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Leaked memo claims that GM, Ford financed pro-CO2 ad campaign

A leaked coal industry memo claims that General Motors and Ford are behind a controversial climate change-denial adBusted campaign currently being run by the the libertarian lobby group the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

(Both Ford and GM now deny this claim – see the comment string that follows.)

The DeSmogBlog team has received a copy of a leaked July 17, 2006 memo written by Stanley Lewandowski, General Manager of the Intermountain Rural Electric Association (IREA). The memo states: 

“The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) has been running two ads in ten states that were financed by General Motors and Ford Motor Company.”

Tue, 2006-07-25 11:15Kevin Grandia
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Busted: Climate change skeptic Ibbetson accused of misinformation

Climate change skeptic and former Kansas police chief, Paul Ibbetson, has been outed for spreading misinformation, by the American Geophysical Union, whose research he used in a recent opinion piece he penned.

The article, Behind the Curtain: revisiting global warming and the war on terror, which appeared on several websites yesterday, stated that:

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