David Case reports on Rick Ness, an employee of the Colorado-based Newmont Mining Corporation who the Indonesian government has accused of dumping dangerous waste into a shallow bay in Sulawesi.
Consumers Union, the publisher of Consumer Reports magazine, recently had firsthand experience with search engine optimization (SEO) techniques that companies are using to suppress negative stories about themselves on the Internet. A company called "DONE!
James L. Horton of the Robert Marston & Associates PR firm is worried about Wikileaks, a new website that provides a means for people to share information about unethical behavior by governments and corporations. Wikileaks says it "is developing an uncensorable Wikipedia for untraceable mass document leaking and participatory analysis.
This bit of PR whitewashing comes very close to a literal definition. From a Japanese press account quoted in the "Telstar Logistics" blog: "China Airlines has painted over its name and logo on the wreckage of a passenger jet that exploded in flames at Naha Airport in Okinawa moments after passengers slid down emergency chutes to escape. The airline painted over the name 'China Airlines' on the left-hand side of the aircraft and the company's logo on the plane's tail fin.
Self-described "disruptive technologist" Virgil Griffith lists as his top aim in developing WikiScanner: "To create a fireworks display of public relations disasters in which everyone brings their own fireworks, and enjoys."
Here at the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), we see WikiScanner as a great way to better understand how public relations firms and other "perception managers" are subverting online discussions and social media. And what better website to track this on than Wikipedia, the world's most popular wiki, or collaboratively edited website?
The Australian supermarket company Woolworths has withdrawn a range of tissue products after being outed by an anonymous blogger for using a "Sustainable Forest Fibre" logo on products sourced from a notorious Indonesian forestry company.
A lobbyist for the Australian forestry company Gunns will travel with a delegation of Tasmanian politicians visiting pulp mills in Brazil, Chile and Finland.
A six-all vote by Launceston City Council on a motion expressing opposition to a proposed pulp mill has irked Gunns, the Tasmanian logging company pushing the project.