Sunday, January 16, 2011

'Melding news with drama, politics with theatre'

The Globe had an interesting weekend piece on "Five reasons why gun control has been disarmed" on the weekend.
Anyone interested in building public/popular support around issues should take a lok.
I was struck by a section on the gun lobby's response after "a string of catastrophic school shootings" before the U.S. elections in 2000.

"So they called in the pros.
The NRA hired the Mercury Group, a high-powered consulting company that describes itself on its website as 'masters at melding news with drama, politics with theatre, and public affairs with popular buzz to make your message sing and your story sell.'
Their client list includes the Navajo Nation, the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions, and the Air Force Memorial Foundation.
Mercury Group worked with the NRA to identify key states to target with their new campaign: 'Vote Freedom First.'
The campaign featured radio and television ads, billboards, bumper stickers and 'other collateral materials.' Huge 'Freedom First' rallies were organized in dozens of cities in swing states leading up to election day.
Afterward, the NRA and Mercury Group declared victory, citing an 85 per cent success rate in state and local elections of sympathetic candidates, a pro-NRA majority seated in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate, and 'a pro-NRA President in the White House.'"

The Mercury Group's description of their role is useful for anyone who is thinking about how to influence opinion (or is the target of such efforts).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Melding news with drama, politics with theatre

A different way of looking at life

Government agencies, tribunals and watchdogs have been put under Mr. Harper’s thumb through dismissals, intimidation tactics and the appointment of lapdogs. - Lawrence Martin, The Globe and Mail


The former Harper spin doctor [Kory Teneycke] who helped advance the Conservative brand is back at the helm of the right-leaning Sun TV News startup as it gets ready to sell its contrarian voice in the Canadian broadcasting market.


Mr. Teneycke’s formula for generating buzz about the venture included a no-holds-barred approach to rivals and naysayers. He publicly derided other news outlets as the “lame-stream media” and lashed out at Sun TV News critics, calling veteran TV journalist Don Newman “the Helen Thomas of Canada.” - Steven Chase, The Globe and Mail


The CRTC is proposing a regulatory change that would give Canadian TV and radio stations more leeway to broadcast false or misleading news.

Current regulations contain a blanket prohibition on broadcasting “any false or misleading news.”

The Canadian Radio-Television Telecommunications Commission wants to considerably narrow the scope of that prohibition. - Joan Bryden, The Globe and Mail


I'm sure all those stories are unrelated