😍 The only way is ethics
Good morning, it's your weekly dose of news chosen by PR futurist Stuart Bruce. Lots about ethics this week with new research from the TUC on the ethical use of AI and an ethical failure in Aston Martin's communications and public affairs. But it's not all doom and gloom as I've also got an inspiring story about NHS workers becoming the social media stars of 2020.
🔮 Trendspotting: Media and public relations in 2021
You've still got time to sign up for the global Business Wire webinar on the emerging trends for 2021. Business Wire brings together an expert panel of media and PR experts to talk about the future. The panellists are Sandra Fathi, president of Affect PR in New York, Ginger Porter, president at Golin in Chicago and a chap from the UK called Stuart Bruce. More than 1,000 people from around the world have already registered so don't miss your opportunity. It's chaired by Jen Friese, Business Wire's chief revenue officer.
💉 Effective vaccine communications
The big news in the UK this week is people will start to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. This is a fantastic 15 tweet Twitter thread by Antonia Bance with ideas for effectively communications to ensure the maximum take-up for vaccination.
🤖 New research into protecting workers and the ethical use of AI
The TUC (the umbrella body representing UK trade unions in a similar way to the CBI represents business) has published an interesting report into the increasing use of AI (artificial intelligence) in the workplace. It looks at the ethical implications of how to protect workers while unlocking potential benefits of AI. Via Antonia Bance, head of communications at the TUC.
🕵 Spying on employees is up 51% since start of the pandemic
Since the start of the pandemic the use of employee surveillance software has increased. Sometimes it is used to help keep workers safer and ensure their wellbeing. However, it can also be used more nefariously to spy on more and more of not just their work but their lives. This chart shows the plethora of surveillance tools available and what they are capable of. I'm not sure if I should be amused or alarmed that some of the names don't even attempt to hide how ethically dubious they are such as Sneek, Spytech, StaffCop, FlexiSpy and KickIdler. Via Andrew Pakes, head of communications and research at Prospect trade union.
👨⚖️ A lawyer's essential top tips for effective crisis PR
In issues or crisis management there is often a tension between the counsel provided by public relations professionals and lawyers. It's essential PR professionals have an understanding of the legal and regulatory framework and tools. This PR Moment by-lined article by Jonathan Coad outlines some legal issues to help prevent a crisis from occurring at all.
🚗 Aston Martin's astroturfing PR firm pushes anti-electric vehicle study
Another week, another breach of basic ethics. This time it is Aston Martin apparently setting up a 'front' PR company to publish a report rubbishing EVs (electric vehicles) as it's one of the ICE (internal combustion engine) manufacturers struggling to make the transition. It appears to be a classic case of astroturfing which has drawn criticism and is being investigated by both professional institute the CIPR and trade body the PRCA. The study was published by Clarendon Communications, a new PR company registered by the wife of Aston Martin's head of government relations whose full time job is as a nurse.
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