Canada’s most-listened to radio show The Currentfeatured a fascinating interview with Paul D. Blanc, M.D. today. Hosted by Anna Maria Tremonti, one of Canada’s most trusted journalists, The Current airs weekday mornings across their country over the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC), and is heard across the U.S. on SiriusXM.
Here’s an excerpt from their summary:
For well over a century, viscose rayon has been used to make clothes, tires, cellophane and everyday kitchen sponges.
It was hailed as a wondrous new product when first introduced — but what most people didn’t know is how deadly manufacturing rayon was for the factory workers.
It’s an industrial hazard whose egregious history ranks up there with asbestos, lead and mercury, according to author Paul Blanc.
In his new book Fake Silk: The Lethal History of Viscose Rayon (published by Yale University Press), Blanc, who is also a University of California professor of medicine, looks at how the manufacturing of viscose rayon served as a death sentence for many industry workers.
“There was a famous rubber factory where they put bars on the second story windows because so many workers had a tendency to jump out and kill themselves,” he tells The Current’s guest host Laura Lynch.
The key ingredient in the making of viscose is a molecule called carbon disulfide — a molecule so insidiously toxic that it devastated the minds and bodies of factory workers for more than a century.
Blanc says that occupational health and multinational corporations were aware of the dangers, but motivated by huge profits, failed to act.
“It was pretty easy to recognize the toxic effects early on because it makes workers insane. They found that about 30 per cent of the workers that they investigated showed signs of serious poisoning.”
But when it comes to the health impact on consumers, Blanc says there is none.
“Which is why … it’s gone on as long. Because when consumers aren’t affected, there’s not very much impetus for outrage if it’s just the poor people making it that suffer.”
Blanc says the fabric continues to this day to be “greenwashed” as an eco-friendly product.
“They omit entirely the fact that you can’t make the product without this toxic chemical. So it’s really a ‘greenwashing’ of the most diabolical sort.”
The goal was to spread the issues and ideas of Speak Out and OVER far and wide, to young and old, to increase awareness on the problems we confront today and to build on solutions that promote human rights — and the rights of all species on Earth. Whether one is working to mitigate the effects of climate change, end child marriage, protect endangered species, or advocating for women’s rights, the Global Population Speak Out helped strengthen activist voices — so all our interconnected concerns were heard.
Speak Out used social media, word-of-mouth and direct action to engage opinion-leaders, scientists and citizens of the world to respond creatively to environmental degradation. Speak Out emphasized elements of environmental protection that are rarely discussed: promoting human rights and human health as strong, indispensable solutions to preserving the rights of other species to exist and the health of the planet.
Speak Out organizers granted the free copies of OVER to people and organizations around the world who became ambassadors of information and inspiration, and promised personalized delivery to policymakers, opinion leaders, activists, allied organizations, and other audiences.
Many of the subjects in OVER are often discussed by environmentalists around the world: materialism, consumption, pollution, fossil fuels, carbon footprints, and more. But OVER and Speak Out purposefully joined two ever-present parts of environmentalism together: the number of the human species and our socio-economic behaviors. The book and the campaign intentionally moved beyond tired arguments that only one side of the equation matters and pictorially depicted the importance of both the number of people and the way people live.
The environmental book became an international media sensation and demand for the OVER books was beyond our wildest expectations – fueled by over 250 mass-media articles, reaching over 1 billion readers in 47 countries.
Examples of media sources that have reported on OVER include Washington Post (online and print), The Guardian (online and print), Buzzfeed.com, Salon.com, News.com (Australia), MSN Germany, Yahoo India, the China Daily News, BBC’s Impact, The Daily Mail Online (UK), Folha de S.Paulo (Brazil), San Francisco Chronicle and Mashable.com.
Ashton Kutcher, actor, producer and investor posted Speak Out content on his Facebook page which resulted in over 31,000 likes, 8,000+ shares and 1,300 comments.
While the media attention was robust, Speak Out organizers believed OVER could really effect change with the citizens and organizations speaking out and sharing their passions for saving the planet and creating a better world for all.
In Europe, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability displayed OVER at an annual congress on climate change adaptation and resilience, thereby “allowing congress participants to peruse the magnificent photos during breaks and have the photos spur thoughts and conversations.”
A library consultant at a prominent international health organization reported that “Word is getting around!” The group was sharing OVER in their campus library, which resulted in requests for copies to be taken to country offices in Bangladesh, India, Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana, and Uganda.
An activist in Mexico told how he shared the message from OVER: “The book has a permanent place on the counter in our restaurant and many friends/customers/associates have already entered and began to read with awe.”
Down in New Zealand, a conservationist shared that “This will be a great opportunity for us to further promote the impact of increasing human populations on our fragile ecosystems and on the future of the planet’s biodiversity.”
Many of those who requested free copies of OVER were high school teachers and college professors. One teacher from the UK said “It is a really exciting and inspiring resource for future planning of activities within the Department, and in doing so, raising awareness with young people.”
Global Population Speak Out (Speak Out) united world-class scientists, academicians, opinion-leaders – and thousands of lay environmentalists and concerned citizens – to help bring international attention to the crises posed by overdevelopment and human population size and growth. Speak Out was jointly administered by Population Media Center and Population Institute.
In the U.S., more than 20 states have legalized marijuana for recreational use, and five states allow it for recreational use. President Obama recently said “You’re starting to see not just liberal Democrats, but also some very conservative Republicans recognize [prohibition] doesn’t make sense.”
So it’s only natural that as Merryjane.com recently reported, “Money is now pouring into the burgeoning industry and cannabis businesses are investing even more in public relations to burnish their image and get their brands noticed.”
“One of the drivers of the boom in cannabis PR agencies has been the high number of activists entering the industry,” the article explains. “And the questions…from reporters that are coming from the mainstream media come from a much more educated place; we’re no longer educating them on the basics of cannabis and why legalization makes sense.
“As more states legalize marijuana, there’s going to be more need for local press for things like dispensary openings and local license applications and those sorts of things. Like for instance in Colorado, obviously, there’s more local reporting going on, so I think eventually there will be more local cannabis PR offices.”
Marijuana is a booming business that will soon be sweeping the country. Cannabis is still federally illegal so a lot of media won’t accept advertisements, leaving public relations as the most effective way for the cannabis industry to gain brand awareness.
PR will play an essential role in introducing the public to the cannabis industry and transforming mainstream views. The challenge is to overcome negative stereotypes created by the most impressive campaign ever: Reefer Madness.
The four types of men who cheat on their partners;
How you got yourself into this situation;
Signs that a married man will actually leave his wife;
Making educated decisions about whether to stay or go;
How to manage the difficult emotions that come with this relationship;
Ways to develop a healthy, fulfilled life regardless of how the relationship turns out.
Dr. DePompo is articulate, charismatic, and excellent on television. This is one of many TV interviews we’ve booked for him as part of our comprehensive book publicity campaign for authors and experts. Please contact Kathlene Carney to discuss how Carney & Associates publicity services can help promote your psychology book or practice.
Our client Zoe Weil was recently interviewed on Sea Change Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio show and podcast hosted by the excellent Alex Wise. Sea Change Radio, which is broadcast to over 60 stations, interviews figures who advance the world’s “shift to social, environmental, and economic sustainability.” It’s an incredible program, and we’re honored to have booked many of our clients there over the years.
Here’s Sea Change’s description of their two-part interview with Zoe:
“What’s the purpose of schooling? Reading, writing and ‘rithmetic, right? Well, our guest today begs to differ. Zoe Weil, author and the founder of the Institute for Humane Education, argues that the obligation of education is to cultivate a generation of “solutionaries” – kind, just, and socially conscious people who will protect the environment and promote human rights. We talk about her new book, The World Becomes What We Teach, and touch upon educational equity issues like implicit bias, summer learning loss, the resurgence of school segregation, and how Common Core fits into her vision for meaningful change.”
Check out part one and part two of Zoe’s interviews online at Sea Change Radio. It’s a great listen!
Radio Ecoshock is an awesome, long-running environmental radio show that airs on more than 91 stations in the U.S. and Canada, plus podcasts and through their website which receives more than 31,000 downloads per month.
Alex Smith, the show’s outstanding host, interviewed our expert Alisha Graves last week. Alisha is co-founder of The OASIS Initiative: A project of University of California, Berkeley, an effort to forestall rapid population growth and extreme poverty in the Sahel region of Africa. Alisha also serves as Vice President of the Population Program at Venture Strategies for Health and Development, a California-based non-profit organization, where she oversees the “Rebirth of Population Awareness” initiative. And she is a research fellow for Project Drawdown, analyzing the potential contribution of family planning for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Our pitch had a provocative title, “Green Sex for Climate’s Sake,” and the show was equally intriguing. Here’s an excerpt from Alex’s description on his site:
“‘Green sex’ – Do it for the climate. We’ll find out what that means with Alisha Graves. The old saying about the circus: ‘There’s a sucker born every minute.’ But hundreds of new humans are born every minute, as the human population continues to multiply. Many will be Western-style super consumers, the ones who drain resources and fill the skies with greenhouse gases. If we can’t control that urge, a major climate disruption may do it for us.
“To hear some environmental groups tell it, all we have to do is install solar energy and drive electric cars – problem solved. But can we really tackle the climate issue without talking about population?
“Our instant mental defense is to tell ourselves it’s those billions of peasants ‘over there’ somewhere who are responsible for the population impact. What’s wrong with that idea? Think of it this way: if you decide not to have a child, you have done far more to reduce greenhouse gases than buying an electric car or installing solar panels. That is because every new consumer born is a heat engine.
“Sex is such a powerful urge. It can drive our lives even when our brains are barely involved, maybe especially when our brains are weak. Do you believe that rational debate can change sexual behavior? It’s interesting to discover that half the babies born in the United States were unintended. So fifty percent of the time, there was no conversation like “should we do this?” Meanwhile, states like Texas are making it harder and harder for a woman to access a safe and legal abortion. At times I’m sure we are going backward in population control, not forward.”
You or anyone can listen to or download just this 23 minute interview with Alisha Graves using these permanent links (in either CD Quality, or the faster loading but lower quality Lo-Fi)
I read a fascinating article by Joshua Benton on NiemanLab.org about how the Internet is pushing the American news business to New York and the coasts. “Rather than creating geographic diversity, digital news has pushed the industry into a few tight clusters. That has real impacts on the journalism we get.” Here are more highlights from his piece:
“Let’s start by thinking of the pre-web news business. Physical distribution of newspapers and over-the-air distribution of TV signals meant location was all-important for daily news. Journalistic talent was arrayed to match, with substantial newsrooms in every city.
“Digital changed that. Think of the most prominent digital-native news companies, like Vice Media, BuzzFeed, Business Insider, Gawker Media, Mashable, Vox Media — all of them are in New York or D.C. (Vice adds a sort of geographic diversity by being in Brooklyn instead of Manhattan, I suppose. But you could still visit a dozen of them without your Uber bill climbing too high.) There are smaller hubs in the Bay Area (for tech reporting), Los Angeles (all about video), and even Miami (for Spanish-language and Hispanic-targeting media), but the increase in concentration is unmistakable. Journalism jobs are leaving the middle of the country and heading for the coasts.
“This won’t come as a shock to anyone who’s studied cluster theory, the idea that industries naturally tend toward concentration in one or a few places — think autos in Detroit, oil in Houston, or music in Nashville. Small geographic advantages start to snowball; companies that want to work with the big players naturally want to be near them, and talented people know that, if they want to do interesting work, they’d best go where the innovation is happening.
“So if the news business is becoming even more centered in New York, what sort of impacts would that have on our news? For one thing, you’d expect it to make the media more liberal — culturally and politically. Journalists don’t like it when conservatives point out that they, as a group, lean farther left than the country as a whole. But you don’t need to be a conspiracy theorist to believe it: College-educated liberal arts grads who live in cities — a group most American journalists fit into — are more liberal as a group than the American median. And those who live in New York or San Francisco are going to be more liberal as a group than those in Cincinnati or Knoxville.
“America is a big, highly distributed place. Our democracy is structured around cities and counties and congressional districts and states. Our media used to be too. As an industry, it’s our responsibility to make sure we don’t become too myopically focused on a few square blocks in Midtown Manhattan.”
As a publicist, I receive a lot of offers to include my clients’ products in celebrity swag bags at various awards shows–for a fee of course.
One year we decided to try it, and we participated in a “swag suite” at the Oscars. It was set up in a luxury hotel suite showcasing green products and services for environmentally conscious celebrities, and I was there representing my beloved client, E-The Environmental Magazine. I watched the A-list famous, B-list famous, the “is she famous?” and countless personal assistants stroll through, graciously accepting cruelty-free cosmetics, acai berry juice, eco-friendly clothing, and even “eco” jewelry (never figured that one out). The event was tastefully executed and overall I felt it was worthwhile exposure for the magazine.
So my ears perked up when I heard about this year’s Oscar Gift Bag brouhaha. Turns out, the participants are getting more publicity than they ever imagined because the organizers are being sued and everyone’s talking about it. Here’s an excerpt from The Atlantic:
“Was it the Vampire Breast Lift? Or maybe the Haze Dual Vaporizer? Or maybe the Nuelle Fiera vibrator? Whatever it was (it was probably the vibrator), 2016 has proved to be the year that a longstanding Oscar tradition—the absurdly expensive and also just absurd gift bags handed out to losing nominees—seems, officially, to have Gone Too Far: Last week, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences sued Distinctive Assets, the marketing firm that has long provided the sassy swag, for trademark infringement.
“The lawsuit contended, essentially, that the party favors to end all party favors—and, more specifically, their vampy/vapey/vibey contents, this year said to be worth $232,000 in all—were giving the awards show a bad name.
“So it’s both ironic and fitting that the Academy’s complaint has had the effect of bringing even more attention than usual to the existence and the excesses of the gift bags. ‘The Oscar Gift Bags Are So Lavish That Even the Academy Is Embarrassed,’ New York magazine declared. ‘Oscar sues over unauthorized (and unsavory) swag bags,’ USA Todayhad it. Those came on top of the many, many articles that had simply catalogued the contents of the bags. Yahoomade a video ‘Dissecting the Outrageously Valuable, Not to Mention Ridiculous, Oscars Gift Bags.’ Blasting Newstook things to their logically Marxist conclusion: “THE RICH AND OSCAR-FAMOUS ARE SPOILED WHILE THOUSANDS GO WITHOUT.”
Last year the Academy warned the company to stop using its name and trademarked “Oscars” title in their name without a disclaimed. An Academy spokesperson said they “had no choice but to file a lawsuit” this year. The Academy itself used to give out its own gift bags but stopped in 2006 after the IRS began to focus on the tax obligations of the give away.
TheDailyBeast said, “Notably, the bags are only given to nominees in the main acting and directing categories, assuring that the sponsored items will only be given to the most famous people at the ceremony. Don’t think for a second that anyone who spent their life savings on a nominated Best Documentary Short is going home with a $5,000 home spa system.
“In this year of #OscarsSoWhite and #FeelTheBern, there is something even more unsavory than usual about this shameless attempt to shower excessive wealth on the excessively wealthy.”
Here’s the list of the 2016 Oscars “unofficial” swag bag contents:
Haze Dual Vaporizer ($250) Personalized M&Ms ($300) A 10,000-meal donation made in the nominee’s name to an animal shelter or rescue of their choice ($6,300) A lifetime supply of Pu-erh Tea Nourishing Cream and Pu-erh Tea Cleansing Bar ($31,200) A year’s worth of Audi car rentals from Silvercar ($45,000) 10-day all-expenses-paid trip to Israel ($55,000) Tribute video services ($125) Caolion Ultimate Pore Care gift set ($134) Healing Saint Luminosity skin serum and hair follicle stimulant ($193) Private 15-day walking tour of Japan ($54,000) 10 personal training sessions with Alexis Seletzky ($900) Belldini gift certificate ($300) Chapstick ($6) Chocolatines Drunken Fig Cake Bites ($35) Dandi Patch anti-perspirant solution ($21) Delovery gift basket ($2,000) Druzy earrings ($25) Fit Club TV “Ultimate Fitness Package” ($6,250) Gleener on the Go ($12) 3-day stay at the Golden Door Resort & Spa in San Marcos, California ($4,800) 3-night stay at the Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria in Sorrento, Italy ($5,000) 3-night stay at the Grand Hotel Tremezzo in Lake Como, Italy ($5,000) Greenhill Blanc de Blancs wine ($39) Hydroxycut Gummies ($20) 3 fitness training sessions with Jay Cardiello ($1,400) Joseph’s Toiletries toilet paper ($275) Sterling silver necklace ($150) Memobottles ($47) El Silencio Mezcal ($75) Mission1 protein bar ($6) Nuelle Fiera arouser for her ($250) Phantom Glass screen protector ($50-$60) Purely Inspired Organic Protein ($20) Rouge Maple culinary products ($99) Sedone Lace makeup brush set ($110) Signature Vodka ($70) Slimware plates ($30) Steamist spa system ($5,060) Sundial powder coating ($500) Blow dryers and flat irons ($250) Vampire Breast Lift ($1,900) Wallet ($125) 740 Park plastic surgery ($5,530)
Traditionally, advertising agencies don’t really understand PR and now they’re scrambling to get up to speed. They’re learning the difference between “buying eyeballs” and “earning them.” When you’re earning eyeballs, your job is to create content that’s newsworthy.
Here are some excerpts from the piece:
“Edelman, the largest independent PR agency, is ‘getting not just a seat at the table, we’re getting half the table,’ said Jackie Cooper, global chair-creative strategy at the firm.
“Where PR used to be tacked onto a campaign after the creative was finished, Edelman is now working with brands and advertising agencies from the very beginning. The agency has been working hand-in-hand with Adobe’s creative teams, for example, from the start of the creative process to build digital activations for the software company’s creative products. Edelman won the Gold PR Lion in 2015 at Cannes for its work on the Adobe Photoshop ‘Murder Mystery’ campaign.
“Sarah Hofstetter, CEO of 360i, who worked in communications earlier in her career, said PR agencies are waking up to the power they can yield beyond media relations. “Marketers really look at how they get the biggest bang for their buck and making their work talkable certainly extends the reach,” she said.
“While 360i is a digital marketing agency at its core, Ms. Hofstetter added that she frequently puts on her PR hat to come up with ideas for clients that consumers will care about and want to share.”
But Harris Diamond, McCann Worldgroup chairman-CEO, cautions “Even though many agencies are adding new capabilities to try to create one-stop shops, the smart firms will primarily focus on what they know best.”
So on that note, contact me for a free consultation to discuss how our public relations services can help with your publicity needs. 🙂
The Guardianrecently published an essay by Joe Bish, Director of Issue Advocacy at Population Media Center (PMC), entitled “Population growth in Africa: grasping the scale of the challenge.” Here’s the intro:
“The last 100 years have seen an incredible increase in the planet’s population. Some parts of the world are now seeing smaller increments of growth, and some, such as Japan, Germany, and Spain, are actually experiencing population decreases.
“The continent of Africa, however, is not following this pattern. Now home to 1.2 billion (up from just 477 million in 1980), Africa is projected by the United Nations Population Division to see a slight acceleration of annual population growth in the immediate future.”
I’m proud to have been providing publicity and media relations services for PMC over the past four years and am especially thrilled with Joe’s piece.
The essay also included a link to our wildly popular photo essay that ran in The Guardian last year on our book Overdevelopment, Overpopulation, Overshoot, as part of our international book publicity campaign. Since April 2015, this webpage has been viewed over 3 million times and has been shared over 700,000 times on social media.
Contact Kathlene Carney at Carney & Associates for a free consultation to discuss how our media relations services can help your nonprofit organization or book’s publicity needs.