How a PR company damages your PR

Is it Friday? One of the strange things about retirement is that you don’t track these things.

Your weekend treat: a juicy PRovoke piece on the Hong Kong government’s new PR company, Consulum. Reading between the lines, it seems the firm lives largely off its Saudi government account. It is also extremely secretive, in an industry whose practitioners are nowadays increasingly aware of the need for transparency and ethics in general. (You learn something new every time you read this mag.) Consulum – a PR company, remember – makes a point of not answering reporters’ questions.

Hong Kong needed a PR agency far more than a PR firm needed Hong Kong.

…If Hong Kong really wanted to build a more positive narrative, hiring a firm that carried [Consulum’s] kind of baggage … seemed like an odd way of going about it. 

One communications guy says… 

“…by selecting Consulum, the Hong Kong government has indicated it’s in the same boat as Saudi Arabia, Djibouti and Bahrain…”

Reuters on the Hong Kong Police under Commissioner Chris Tang. Shortly to be re-titled Commissar. Some more about his New Territories connections might have been interesting, but we understand. I’ve said it before: prepare for him to be Chief Executive (not that it matters who sits in that chair).

Times Higher Education on academics avoiding Hong Kong quoting Steve Tsang of the SOAS China Institute…

“This law is extraterritorial, which means it applies to anyone writing about China, whether they are in Hong Kong or London,” said Professor Tsang, who added that he would no longer feel safe travelling to Hong Kong. “I would absolutely consider it a risk,” he said.

While Professor Tsang maintained that his academic output on China was “critical commentary” as opposed to “advocacy”, which could be prosecuted under the new law, he said he was not confident that Chinese authorities would see the situation in the same way.

Pro-democratic party activists are grateful to Constitutional Affairs Secretary Erick Tsang for publicizing their otherwise low-key ‘primaries’ to decide candidates in the LegCo elections in September. Maybe if they called it a ‘survey’ it wouldn’t get officials so agitated – as with ‘referendums’. The idea of course is to ensure a multitude of tiny pan-dem parties don’t split the vote. Here’s the details. And a stand-up offers a zippy explanation.

Given that many candidates will likely be disqualified, it will probably send a louder message if pan-dems boycott the election. Let Beijing explain a 20% turnout.

New Republic on the Left’s aversion to criticizing China’s human-rights violations in Xinjiang. (I’m in the who-cares-what-they-think camp, but it would be nice if the article did more to explain why the tankies think like they do.)

At the other end of the spectrum – just because John Bolton says – it doesn’t mean it’s nuts. A proposal that the US recognize Taiwan. Yaay.

A bit dated now Canberra has done the deed, but why Oz (and anywhere) should scrap HK extradition arrangements.

Atlantic on collaborators and why they do it – from East Germans devoted to the Soviets to Republicans going along with Trump. 

…“voluntary” collaborators [were placed] into two additional categories. In the first were those who worked with the enemy in the name of “national interest,” rationalizing collaboration as something necessary for the preservation of the French economy, or French culture—though of course many people who made these arguments had other professional or economic motives, too. In the second were the truly active ideological collaborators: people who believed that prewar republican France had been weak or corrupt and hoped that the Nazis would strengthen it, people who admired fascism, and people who admired Hitler.

Insert the names of the Hong Kong CCP shoe-shiners of your choice.

And the perfect gift for the man who has everything except a 10-year prison sentence for possession of illegal secessionist materials, the Glory to Hong Kong music box.

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12 Responses to How a PR company damages your PR

  1. Charlie says:

    Thank you. I’m glad you’re still posting in your retirement. Know that you are being read every day, even if I don’t post many replies.

  2. Cassowary says:

    “Let Beijing explain a 20% turnout.”

    Something something voter intimidation splittist terrorist elements something brave patriots something. It’s not like these guys feel any shame.

    As for the tankies, I don’t know why anyone pays attention to them. Their actual level of political influence is non-existent.

  3. Mark Bradley says:

    I wonder if Chris Tang will be CE after Carrie’s terms ends, or if they’ll force Carrie to have another term because why not? She follows orders perfectly and supports unilateral action from the CCP. Not that it matters.

  4. Confernece says:

    And speaking of cops and the New Territories, anyone noticed how the coverage in May of those gwailo coppers who (i) breached certain laws associated with their housing and (ii) appropriated for themselves a parking space with a police cone, disappeared from follow-up coverage? This was spearheaded by some very brave people from Apple Daily who actually went to these houses and were promptly arrested. One can assume newspapers now won’t touch a story like this.

    More darkness descending. Pretty soon google, you tube and other items will be blocked here, and we will all be in the dark like they are on the other side of the “border”.

  5. Big Al says:

    I’m sure that once the pro-dems are hounded into extinction by the CCP and “voting” in Hong Kong becomes a choice between identical odious pro-Bejing slimeballs, then the voter turnout rate will be proudly reported as 100%*, if not more, with all of the “correct” candidates elected to their predetermined positions. That’s democracy CCP-style. So, something to look forward to, then.
    *of those who voted for an odious pro-Bejing slimeball

  6. Chinese Netizen says:

    @Mark Bradley: My bet is on Curry using a health related excuse to opt out of a second term and then run to the UK without ever looking back (hopefully the UK will have either banned or sanctioned her by then). But then again who knows if megalomania has totally taken over??

  7. Joe Blow says:

    @Big Al: When that time arrives I’ll be propping up a bar counter on the main strip of Angeles City hoisting cold ones, having finished my nooner with Margarita (the cocktail, not the waitress).

  8. PRC? More like PR E minus says:

    Surely a PR firm that cares so little about image that they’ll agree to work for the HKSARG is — by definition — the worst possible candidate for the job?

  9. steve says:

    The PRovoke article is really informative. Thanks.

  10. Hamantha says:

    @pd @Hemlock

    Great article in the HK Free Press. A breath of fresh pessimism, and a needed one too given all the milquetoast analysis and business-as-usual OPed pieces on Hong Kong’s future.

  11. Reader says:

    Surely Consulum’s policy of “not answering reporters’ questions” is a feature, not a bug, from HKSARG’s point of view?

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