blog Wow. There certainly is a bit of a propaganda war going on out there. We’ve seen a lot of questionable comments and activities from the Coalition with respect to the National Broadband Network project over the years. But I don’t think we’ve seen anything quite this bad before. The Sydney Morning Herald reports this morning that Labor ad agency Naked Communications offered exclusive interviews with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, in response for editorial coverage favourable to Labor — including on the NBN. The newspaper reports (we recommend you click here for the full article):
“The deal, which also encouraged journalists to produce “entertaining content on the theme of the inadequacy of the Liberal NBN plan”, was rejected on ethical grounds by Fairfax Media’s popular culture website, TheVine.”
I think it should be clear to everyone that this behaviour is unacceptable, and I highly support The Vine’s response in rejecting the ad brief put through by Naked Communications, as well as its move to report the issue to fellow Fairfax stablemate The Sydney Morning Herald. I’ve personally seen some pretty “out there” advertising briefs in my time in my decade in journalism, but I’ve never seen anything which crosses the commercial/editorial lines quite this badly. Exclusive interviews with the Prime Minister? In an advertising agency brief? In exchange for coverage slagging the Coalition? That’s the definition of unethical behaviour in the media industry. We hope that Rudd’s response is accurate and that nobody higher up the chain authorised this behaviour. I certainly think Naked, after being dumped from the Labor account, will be thinking twice about doing this again.