Cohen clarifies statements on PR industry

NEW YORK: CBS commentator Andrew Cohen apologized for comparing the PRSA's Code of Ethics to 'The Burglars Association of America [having] as its creed 'Thou Shalt Not Steal,' but continued to chastise the industry.

NEW YORK: CBS commentator Andrew Cohen apologized for comparing the PRSA's Code of Ethics to "The Burglars Association of America [having] as its creed 'Thou Shalt Not Steal,"' but continued to chastise the industry. He further claimed he is "the target of a public relations effort to ridicule [his] effort, [his] points, [his] character, and integrity."

Cohen first made comments disparaging the PR industry on CBS News' Sunday Morning while discussing Scott McClellan's recently published memoirs, “What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception.”

The PRSA released a video statement from chairman and CEO Jeff Julin on its Web site rebutting Cohen's claims and reiterating that its guidelines are bedrock standards of the organization's more-than-30,000 members. The association had also taken issue with Cohen's first remarks.

Cohen, however, continued to claim that the industry should take his commentary as a “wake-up call.”

“For a profession that lives or dies on public perceptions, you folks in [PR] have as much work to do as the legal profession and the journalism profession in changing the negative attitudes of your now-cynical audiences,” he said on a commentary posted on CBSNews.com.

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