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An Idea A Day by David Thompson

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CRISIS MANAGEMENT

LET YOUR ENEMIES TALK

Jim Blythe

BEING ATTACKED IS not pleasant—most of us feel resentful, especially when we feel we are being wrongly accused. So a typical response from a company under attack is to try to silence the opposition—perhaps by taking out a lawsuit (as McDonald’s has been known to do) or by denying access to the media (perhaps by threatening to withdraw advertising).

Although this type of behavior is very human, it is also very counterproductive—there are simply too many ways in which a protester can make his or her voice heard. The internet, the gutter press, even satirical magazines all offer access for someone ...

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