10
Feb
2005

Sunshine Turns to Darkness for the Media

by Cliff Kincaid | February 4, 2005

Accuracy in Media

It was a big story for the liberal media that they had finally caught a conservative journalist or commentator doing something wrong. They found out that Armstrong Williams had taken federal money through a public relations firm. But our journalists know something about public relations, too. The Associated Press reported in January that journalism organizations are planning a nationwide campaign in March, dubbed "Sunshine Week," to press the case for freedom of information and the right to know. According to AP, "For a week beginning March 13, news outlets will run stories, editorials and cartoons on the subject."

This is nothing but a public relations campaign by, of and for the media.

It just so happens, according to AP, that Tom Curley, president and CEO of the Associated Press, is part of the effort. AP quotes him as saying, "From city hall to Congress, and from police chiefs' offices to the attorney general's office, the trend toward secrecy is unmistakable. The most important thing from our standpoint, of course, is to connect what we do to the public interest, and to line up with the people and remind them how important it is that they get access to what their elected representatives are doing."

Isn't it nice that the media report favorably on initiatives from the media? But isn't it curious that AP runs a story on the subject quoting the president of AP and no one who questions what the campaign is all about? Fortunately, there is a publication called PR Week, which covers the public relations industry. And when it found out about "Sunshine Week," it seemed to recognize a public relations stunt. What's more, PR Week journalist Erica Iacono came to Accuracy in Media for comment. ... More about this at //www.aim.org/media_monitor/2605_0_2_0_C/


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