The world is getting dumber, or there’s something in the water in Northeast Ohio

February 4, 2010

If Jim Traficant wins a seat in Congress this fall, I may have to move. How could I live in a state of collective stupidity? That we’re even discussing “candidate” Traficant is downright crazy, and it has me wondering what’s happened to critical thinking.

Jim Traficant

You remember Jimbo, don’t you? He’s the former congressman from Ohio’s 17th District who spent the past 7 years in federal lockup, convicted of bribery and racketeering. He’s back, and a cadre of loyalists want to send him back to Washington. Read the rest of this entry »

Sometimes you gotta realize that people are nuts, and build it into your PR plan

September 4, 2009
Photo by Alex Miroshnichenko via Wikipedia Common.

Photo by Alex Miroshnichenko via Wikipedia Common.

I used this story in class yesterday to illustrate how tough it can be to understand and communicate with publics in emotional situations.

Effective communication always starts with knowing your audiences and anticipating how they’ll behave. But what do we do, I asked the class, when your publics take action that seems entirely irrational?

“How many of you would refuse orders to evacuate your home if you knew a wildfire might engulf the structure and kill you and your family?” No one raised a hand as we reviewed pictures of Southern California residents standing up against the flames. Read the rest of this entry »