Practicing PR Will Be Harder in This Post-Truth Era

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“What people believe prevails over the truth.”
— Sophocles, from “Sons of Aleus”

We now have slid from “truthiness,” Stephen Colbert’s funny little noun that means “the quality of seeming to be true according to one’s intuition, opinion or perception without regard to logic, factual evidence or the like,” a short distance down a very slippery slope to “post-truth.” The Oxford English Dictionary has selected “post-truth” as its <a href=”http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-37995600″>word of the year</a>. It is defined as an adjective relating … Read the rest

The Caution Race

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A “caution race” currently is underway in the cruise line public relations practice.

It started with the political unrest in Egypt a couple of years back when cruise lines in media statements canceled port calls at potentially unstable destinations “as a precaution.”

Over the past year, however, the caution race has escalated, with cruise lines canceling calls or taking ships out of service in “an abundance of caution.”

Most recently I read a cruise line statement regarding an itinerary-change decision … Read the rest

15 Words You Shouldn’t Oughta Use

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From Ragan’s PR Daily:

No authoritarian authority exists that determines whether a given word is valid or bogus. In any language, there’s a complex and imperfect vetting procedure; at least in English, most serious writers agree on the correct or preferred form of a word that is one of two or more variants or on whether a word is acceptable at all.
Here’s a list of words that have been under scrutiny in this approval process:

1. Administrate: A

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Sign of the Times — ‘Austerity’ Chosen as Word of the Year

These are dark days, indeed. Merriam-Webster, the dictionary people, noted that “austerity” was searched more than 250,000 times on its website, thereby earning the 14th-century noun Word of the Year honors, however dubious they might be.

The other most popular words of 2010 included “pragmatic,” “moratorium,” “socialism” and “bigot” — M-W cited the last word as a result of its public use by former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, former CNN host Rick Sanchez and former NPR senior analyst … Read the rest