Looks like former tobacco spin doctor Doug Goodyear's DCI Group is getting with the times and letting loose it's controversial TCSDaily project. As many know, the ExxonMobil sweetheart TCSDaily has been a bastion of the climate change denial movement for quite some time now. You also may remember that DCI Group was embroiled in a bit of controversy lately over a YouTube Al Gore spoof video they produced and posted under the guise of 29-year old amatuer filmmaker.
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.
Democracy is utterly dependent upon an electorate that is accurately informed. In promoting climate change denial (and often denying their responsibility for doing so) industry has done more than endanger the environment. It has undermined democracy.
There is a vast difference between putting forth a point of view, honestly held, and intentionally sowing the seeds of confusion. Free speech does not include the right to deceive. Deception is not a point of view. And the right to disagree does not include a right to intentionally subvert the public awareness.