Stories by Scott Van Camp

PR and the Airline ‘Fat Tax’: Endless Possibilties

March 27th, 2013 by

Recently, Dr. Bharat P. Bhatta of Sogn og Fjordane University College in Norway, laid out a modest proposal in the Journal of Review and Pricing Management: Airlines should charge overweight passengers more for their plane tickets than thin passengers. The result of this move would allow carriers to save money on fuel, which could mean… Continued

‘Stuffy Old Men’: Report Acknowledges GOP’s PR Problem

March 18th, 2013 by

The GOP has a PR problem. The party so much as acknowledged that on Monday with the release of a 100-page report  detailing messaging shortcomings that Republicans say are the cause of its jarring defeat last November to incumbent President Barack Obama, as well as the loss of several seats in the House of Representatives.… Continued

Battle Facebook Fatigue with Compelling Content

February 11th, 2013 by

While Facebook continues to be the social platform of choice for many brands, a couple of interesting studies released last week could trip an alarm for communications pros. A Pew study found that the majority of the 1,000-plus people surveyed said they have taken breaks from Facebook at some point, and those breaks can be… Continued

Boy Scouts Gay Policy Reversal-Read the Fine Print

January 30th, 2013 by

The announcement this week by the Boy Scouts of America that it was considering reversing its policy of not allowing gays to join its ranks was front-page news. After all, the organization has fought tooth and nail—going all the way to the Supreme Court in 2000—to keep gays out. Now, with the announcement that it’s… Continued

Restaurant Chains Lead CSR Charge

January 25th, 2013 by

The news this week that McDonald’s will use only Alaskan Pollack—sustainably fished in the wild—in its Filet-O-Fish and Fish McBites products, proves the point that corporate social responsibility is taking the business world by storm. And these days the restaurant industry appears to be leading the CSR charge. The Los Angeles Times reported this week… Continued

The Digital/Social War Room Gains Steam

January 15th, 2013 by

Who can forget the photo of President Obama and prominent members of his administration anxiously watching monitors while the assault on Osama Bin Laden’s hideout in Pakistan went on in real-time. Now it seems that brands are having their own “Zero Dark Thirty” moments, in terms of monitoring digital and social campaigns. Okay, maybe the… Continued

Flu Epidemic Highlights Messaging Mojo of CDC

January 11th, 2013 by

Flu season is upon us, and in a big way. Today the story broke that flu-related deaths have now reached the “epidemic” level. With two small kids, that’s a worry to me. Then I began reading what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had to say on their regular morning conference call to reporters,… Continued

New Year’s Resolutions that PR Pros can Actually Keep

January 2nd, 2013 by

Let’s face it. New Year’s Resolutions more often than not don’t quite work out. Such resolutions (finish Robert Caro’s latest tome on Lyndon Baines Johnson or hit the gym more frequently) may last a few weeks or months into the New Year, but then they start to wane. So, for the purposes of pushing the… Continued

Toyota’s Reputation Still Needs Repairing After $1 Billion Settlement

December 28th, 2012 by

In 2009 and 2010 Toyota faced a doozy of a crisis when some customers reported that the cat company’s vehicles were accelerating without warning, causing accidents, injuries and deaths. The accusations sent Toyota’s sales reeling, while its reputation as a maker of safe and dependable cars took a nosedive. Now, nearly four years later, Toyota… Continued

Netflix Streaming Snafu Highlights Friend-Foe Relationships

December 26th, 2012 by

Christmas Eve 2012 was not an enjoyable one for Netflix, the popular streaming video service. That night, customers across Canada, Latin America and the U.S. hit snags in streaming the company’s movies and TV shows into their homes—via various devices like gaming consoles and DVD players. The snafu was nowhere near the seriousness of the… Continued