Good PR of the week
Public acts of defiance and protest have gained public attention since forever. Images of self immolation, emaciated prisoners on hunger strike and rebellion such as that shown by the Tank Man of Tiananmen Square have filled the pages of the media we consume for the last one hundred years, demonstrating that selfless objection is a sure-fire way to get your voice heard.
Well, this example is nowhere near as revolutionary as my introduction would have you imagine, but still, it’s a nice PR move with a somewhat charitable aim.
Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce to you a noble Australian man by the name of Simon Griffiths. He is refusing to leave the throne, that is, the toilet seat you can see in the image below – until $50,000 is raised for his feel-good toilet paper venture. As alluded to above, his public benevolence in the name of promoting his toilet paper business “Who Gives a Crap”, means half of the profits will go to building bogs in third world countries. There’s even a live feed, though by the time this column gets published, I imagine the whole thing will have ended.
At the time of writing, Simon had been on the toilet for almost two days straight, with just $2,000 to go to reach his target. It’s one of the most dedicated acts of publicity I think I’ve seen since writing this column, so huge props to him.
Huge thanks to Alexa Wasielewska (who writes a very funny blog here) and Stephen Graham for their help in writing this!
Panda-monium in central London
Last week, 108 pandas dragged their obstinately celibate behinds to the London Underground where they hopped on at Charing Cross to make their way to Trafalgar Square. The cheeky not-so-endangered scamps then practised some form of Tai Chi dance, before attending a panda party in Covent Garden.
All this was to promote Panda Awareness Week, the 108 “pandas” representing the number currently living at the Chengdu Panda Base, in China.
So, while we can’t expect pandas to know that flashmobs are oh-so-2010, the stunt worked well, with coverage in the majority of UK national print and broadcast press.
Bad PR of the week
H2No on Ryanair
Apparent disco legend Nile Rodgers was left feeling as leathery as his skin recently when Ryanair refused to give him a free glass of water to help him gulp some medication.
Although the musician tried to pay for water using his credit card and three different swipe machines, the stewardesses still refused to cave, finding themselves the butt of a few negative headlines as a result.
Apple’s litigious ways have hit a snag as British courts have decided that Samsung's Galaxy Tab tablet devices do not infringe Apple designs, with Judge Colin Birss QC guaranteeing himself a Christmas present with the following comment:
"They do not have the same understated and extreme simplicity which is possessed by the Apple design. They are not as cool."
Backhanded pettiness aside, it’s a farcical end to a case that had it gone the other way; Samsung could have been in some seriously hot water.
My personal judgement is that neither company comes out of this looking well – but Apple does itself no favours getting sue-y every time somebody follows in its ifootsteps.
Have you seen any good or bad PR?
Contact PR Rich Leigh with it by Tweeting him @GoodandBadPR or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org throughout the week and we’ll happily credit you for your trouble.
Good and Bad PR is a feature on the blog of 10 Yetis PR Agency. Rich also writes about PR stunts at PRexamples.com.