Gawker (sort of) defends PR industry

A PR Watch story details the work of a PR firm that collected a dossier on reporter Danielle Ivory, who was doing a story on the agri-business firm Syngenta. To which Gawker said, This ‘is not a scandal.’

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So, it seems noteworthy that Gawker‘s Hamilton Nolan, a frequent critic of public relations (and a former PR Week reporter), came to the defense (sort of) of the industry.

On Tuesday, PR Watch published an in-depth report on the efforts of Syngenta, its PR department and several outside firms to control the news about atrazine, a herbicide that has been linked to health risks. Syngenta is an agri-business firm that manufactures atrazine.

One of the many details unearthed by PR Watch says that after reporter Danielle Ivory, then working for The Huffington Post Investigative Fund, started asking questions about atrazine two years ago, the firm Maverick Strategies worked up a dossier on Ivory that claimed among other things that she worked for a “who’s who of anti-employer employers.”

The documents obtained by PR Watch, which is published by the Center for Media and Democracy, come from a lawsuit filed against Syngenta.

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