PR Factchecking

September 7, 2008

I found this video interesting.  Factchecking is important in all aspects of Public Relations.  What was apparently intended to be an image of Walter Reed Medical Center turns out to be an image of Walter Reed Middle School…an oops seen by a record audience of 39 million people.  Though I’m sure it was only noticed by a few.

Link to follow up on this posting here.  The original post from Talking Points Memo here.

PR Spin here (campaign strategist blames the ad guy).  Failure to properly execute Integrated Marketing Communications can result in crisis communications moments.


New G.I. Bill worth every penny

July 30, 2008

Here is a link to the official Army story on the new G.I. Bill (S.22).  This puts teeth to the phrase “Support the troops.”

Here’s a link to the Department of Veterans Affairs site on the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008

As you may know, I like opinion writing.  There were several strong Op-Eds that brought needed attention to the debate over Veterans educational benefits.  They are here, here, and here.

And here’s some video about this issue:

Unfortunately, there was political back & forth on what seems to be such a simple issue–though debate is a key part of democracy.  A few blogs followed the politics of this bill.  Huff Post, Grassroots on Web helps GI Bill pass, Senators debate G.I. Bill .

If you know anyone who’s served since 9/11 be sure they are aware of the tremendous benefits of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008.

Here is a FACT SHEET about the bill.  Enjoy!

Where else can you work for 2-3 years, leave your job, and get 100% of your tuition paid for with over $1,000 cash for living expenses?


Should the media cover military funerals

July 10, 2008
Fired ANC Public Affairs office

Fired Arlington National Cemetery Public Affairs officer

Hopefully my 18 month academic lobotomy at Georgetown will ensure that I make sound decisions when I graduate and embrace the media.

Recently the Public Affairs director at Arlington National Cemetery was fired for honoring a fallen Soldier’s family’s request to allow media at their loved ones funeral.  In April, one funeral was reported on by Dana Milbank in the Washington Post.  Today he has a full article about Gina Gray getting the “boot”.

In small towns across America there are monuments to honor our fallen Soldiers.  Remembering those killed in action is a necessary to keep the civilian citizenry engaged in the sacrifice Service members make while they “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic.”

Attending the funeral for Second Lieutenant Lisa N. Bryant at Arlington National Cemetery is an event I will never, ever forget.  I saw a similar event depicted on Army Wives and was touching but not quite the same.  The Soldiers of the Old Guard caissons platoon are among our Army’s finest ambassadors.  Their story and the story of the heroes who make the ultimate sacrifice on battlefields should be told.

I won’t speculate on any families reason to have media at a funeral.  What I do know is we celebrate our fallen heroes all the time.  Just a few weeks ago there many hours of live coverage of Tim Russert’s funeral and; Metro (Washington’s mass transit system) had it’s highest number of passengers during President Reagan’s state funeral.

This is all interesting to me.  There’s a balance between policy and free press.  Here’s an example of conflict between the two.  Most often the military has a hamonius and mutually beneficial relationship with the media.

What’s your opinion?  Have you ever been to a military funeral?


Happy Independence Day!!!

July 4, 2008

I like this photo…

A veteran and his wife celebrate with their pick for POTUS \'08

Here’s their guy…Click here to see why I agree.

Sen. Barack Obama addresses veterans in Fargo, North Dakota (7/4/08)