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“American Pie” Singer Is Neither A Villain Nor A Monster

Don McLean, the singer-songwriter best known for his 1971 hit “American Pie,” was arrested last week on a domestic assault charge.

Last Thursday, he released the following statement: “This last year and especially now have been hard emotional times for my wife my children and me. What is occurring is the very painful breakdown of an almost 30 year relationship…There are no winners or losers but I am not a villain.”

As soon as I read the phrase, “I am not a villain,” I knew that unfortunate word ‘villain’ would find its way into headlines—and it did.

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Is Volkswagen’s CEO Following BP’s Disastrous Playbook?

It’s almost as if Volkswagen CEO Matthias Müller studied the performance of infamous BP CEO Tony “I’d like my life back” Hayward and said, “Yes, that’s how I’d like to respond to our own company’s crisis.”

VW, which is in the midst of an emissions-rigging scandal affecting millions of vehicles, has been accused by regulators of intentionally programming its engines to fool laboratory emissions tests. When asked whether his company had an ethical problem, he responded, “It was an ethical problem? I cannot understand why you say that.”

It gets worse.

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Is It A Bad Idea To Delete An Offensive Tweet?

A public relations professional recently argued that people who tweet something offensive shouldn’t delete it.

Deleting the offensive tweet doesn’t make it go away, he argued, and sometimes the fact that a person deleted it only makes the story bigger.

That may be true, but I disagree. Deleting offensive tweets makes sense for several reasons. But there’s one mandatory step people must take before pressing the “delete” key.

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Melanie Streeper

No, No, No: This Is Not How You Handle A Media Ambush

Last week, PR Daily and PR Newser covered the story of a St. Louis public information officer named Melanie Streeper, who attempted to thwart a reporter from interviewing her boss by shouting “No, no no!” repeatedly, as cameras rolled.

Local reporter Elliott Davis wanted to ask St. Louis Comptroller Darlene Green about her take-home car, which

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The Brian Williams Today Show “Comeback” Interview

Brian Williams appeared with Matt Lauer on NBC’s Today Show this morning in his first interview since getting caught fabricating stories about past news events.

Although I thought it was a bad idea for Williams to be interviewed by one of his NBC colleagues—which throws into question the independence of the interview—Lauer asked many of the

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How To Prepare For A Ted Talk | Public Speaking Tips

Crisis management professional and friend of the blog Melissa Agnes recently delivered her first TEDx Talk.

Her talk, “The Secret to Successful Crisis Management in the 21st Century,” made the case that being proactive during a crisis isn’t enough—but that companies need to be thinking proactively during their day-to-day business operations.

“Crisis management today, in large part,

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Tom Brady: Hero Worship Leads To Lame Crisis Response

On Wednesday, a 243-page report found it was “more probable than not” that New England Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady was “at least generally aware of the inappropriate actions” his team’s staff took to deflate footballs in January’s AFC Championship game against the Indianapolis Colts.

In other words, there’s a better chance than not that Brady is

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ESPN Reporter’s Vile Rant And Useless Apology

I try to be objective on this blog, but this story makes my blood boil.

Britt McHenry, an ESPN reporter based in Washington, DC, was caught on tape recently berating, belittling, and dehumanizing the cashier at a tow lot. Her vicious, bullying, and entitled rant would make her the perfect cast member for the next installment

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