Edelman earns a break

I’ve just finished listening to the latest episode of EARshot, the podcast from Edelman PR ably hosted and produced by Phil Gomes on October 27.

What’s especially interesting about this 35-minute podcast is that it’s a recording of an internal Edelman meeting in the US that discusses ethics in social media, led by Rick Murray who heads Edelman’s me2revolution social media practice.

As just about anyone in the PR business now knows, Edelman was the focus of widespread criticisms last month over their questionable behaviour in relation to some blogs for their client Wal-Mart which were not as they seemed.

The critcisms were fuelled by a wall of silence from Edelman for some days until CEO Richard Edelman posted his reaction to the kerfuffle, followed by a statement of steps the firm was taking to help its employees understand how social media works, clearly with a primary goal of ensuring that what happened with Wal-Mart wouldn’t happen again.

Next, I’ve been looking at the short video posted by David Brain which shows a group of Edleman employees in London listening to Rick Murray giving a similar presentation.

Then, reading Richard Edelman’s interview with ITworld.com on Monday.

I think the open, public and transparent way in which Edelman is addressing this whole matter deserves support. They certainly didn’t have to be this public with what they’re doing.

I know that if I were an Edelman client, they’d have my renewed respect.

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Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. Dennis Howlett

    The speaker on the video says: “We’re never going to comment, unless you ask us to, as to whether this or that is a good idea, that’s not our job and then lecturs the watchinig audience about covering their collective butts. That’s progress?

  2. neville

    Don’t you think they deserve a break, Dennis? They made a mistake. They’ve acknowledged that and are publicly showing what they are doing to be better in future. They’re not perfect, just like everyone else.

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