This Week in PR Ethics (9/1/22) Is it ever right to sabotage your company? Do you need an ethics advisor?

This week in public relations ethics there were some really interesting articles that look at duty, leadership and the need for counsel.

  • Is it ever right to sabotage your company? – This article generated a lot of discussion among my peers. It looks at the hypocrisy of companies claiming to care about the environment yet they are representing companies damaging it. But even tongue in cheek, is it ever right to sabotage your agency’s work or the work of a client? Where does your duty lay?

  • How to be an ethical leader – Business News Daily had an interesting article on how to be an ethical leader. It’s a good list, and I particularly like number 10, as it is one that is often overlooked – care for yourself so you’re able to care for others.

  • Ethical beauty needs to also look at the environment – This article points out that ethical beauty needs to look beyond animal testing, and that beauty companies can do well by doing good.

  • Do you need an ethics advisor – Continuing the international focus, the new U.K. prime minister said she didn’t need an ethics advisor for she knows the difference between right and wrong.  She is missing one key point – we are all human and make mistakes. Having a check and balance can help prevent a misstep.

  • Check out PRCA during ethics month – It looks like there will be some interesting content from PRCA for ethics month in September, including a survey on the state of ethics and compliance in PR and communications across the world. The survey will go live on 1st September and is available to all practitioners across the world.
  • Don’t believe everything you see – This has been great advice for a long time, but the editing of a Dr. Oz campaign sign which blew up on social drives home the power of photoshop.  What concerns me is when deep fake videos get as easy to do and how it will undermine our trust even further.
Mark McClennan, APR, Fellow PRSA
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Mark W. McClennan, APR, Fellow PRSA, is the general manager of C+C's Boston office. C+C is a communications agency all about the good and purpose-driven brands. He has more than 20 years of tech and fintech agency experience, served as the 2016 National Chair of PRSA, drove the creation of the PRSA Ethics App and is the host of


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