Has The Economist gone too far calling the PR industry ‘slime-slingers’?

A blogger at Fast Company comes to the industry’s defense after the venerable Economist goes a little hyperbole happy in a story about public relations.

The blogger, Wendy Marx, is defending the industry with an op-ed suggesting that The Economist has gone too far in its characterization of PR people as “flacks,” “slime-slingers,” members of the “dark side,” and “urban foxes.”

The point of the Economist story may have been lost in hyperbole. It basically bemoans the rise of PR professionals with the coinciding decline of journalism.

But Marx makes a good point:

The article, besides having a noxious tone, sounds like the writer has imbibed some cynical journalists’ take on PR from 80 years ago. In fact, it quotes a 1928 book by Edward Bernay, one of the pioneers in public relations, as evidence of the profession’s spinning creed.

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