Episode #52: A Politician Finds Himself Naked on Zoom, and Why Vaccines Struggle with PR
We made a full year! What better way to mark the first anniversary of the PR & Law Podcast than with another humiliating story of a bumbling, high-profile individual and his lack of computer skills. No, it's not Jeffrey Toobin redux -- it's a federal politician in Canada who went out for a jog, returned to his office, launched Zoom for a high-level government Q/A session, shed his clothes, popped into the shower, and then got dressed. It's all pretty routine except for the fact his camera was on the entire time. It's embarrassing, of course, but what should be done? Should anything be done? How does this compare to the infamous Jeffrey Toobin case we discussed in Episode 32? Ewan gives us some answers.
Then Cam, primed and ready for his first dose of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine, discusses the mess Johnson & Johnson has found itself in. The drugmaker had its vaccines suspended in the United States after six women developed blood clots after receiving the jab. It's not the first time a vaccine has run into PR problems (see: AstraZeneca in Episode 48), but the issues facing these companies might be larger and more complex than companies in other sectors. Cam explains some of the psychology behind resistance to the vaccines and how the drugmakers can try and extricate themselves from the powerful news currents that have put their brands at risk.
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Ewan Christie is an employment lawyer and partner at Duntrune LLP in Toronto, Canada.
Cam MacMurchy is a corporate communications executive with a multinational technology company listed in Hong Kong and curator of the Digital Bits PR and Communications newsletter. He also contributes to Apple news website 9to5Mac and shares his thoughts on PR, media, travel, and technology on his website.