Friday, 22 October 2010

Public Relations and the Ethical Question

This morning the Thurrock Learning Shop welcomed 22 local business people to the Easy Steps into PR seminar hosted by Knowledge Thurrock Innovation Associates. Delivered by UEL's own Marketing Guru Ian Bathgate, the course was both challenging and insightful and raised several question of an ethical nature.

Not so long ago Lady Gaga caused controversy by sporting a meat dress to the Video Music Awards. Overnight, she had caused yet another media sensation and made herself more than half the planet's collective focus. Much has been made as to whether it was a comment on ageing and decay, a feminist statement, an anti-fashion statement or merely a platform to highlight the now-defunct "don't ask don't tell" American military recruitment policy. Whatever it was, it's amazing to think that something that occurred 6-weeks ago on the West Coast of the US was discussed and critiqued by a group of business people on a chilly October Friday morning in Thurrock. Surely, that's a PR success? Ethical? Well, that may be another question.

So back to the Learning Shop and we're thinking about our own PR. December 15th will be our 1st Birthday and having already welcomed over 5000 members of the local community through the door, we are thinking about ways in which we can engage with 5000 more. Whilst Thurrock's Friday market boasts a meat van and students from our Fun with Fabrics workshop might be able to run up a bacon frock, the thing with PR is that once it's been done, it's been done.

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