Opinion: From our Readers - ... and makes it harder to time news stories

The world remains obsessed with Michael Jackson more than a week after his death. It is not making our jobs any easier.

Judging when to release news stories to maximise the potential of coverage and raise their profile is critical - but the hiatus between Jackson's death and his burial is denying vital room for clients as the media rake over every facet of his troubled life. As a betting man, I'd say they will continue to do so until he's spotted on the moon or pushing a trolley around Asda.

But whatever we do as an industry, we should resist the temptation to bury bad news. No-one can ever trump Labour aide Jo Moore's debacle during the September 11 attacks, but there will be cynics out there watching very carefully for companies releasing stuff under cover of global mourning.

On the other hand, anyone with good news should think about whether it will keep until after the funeral. They will have to hope so, because space is at a premium.

Food for thought, but Jackson's death has sparked off an early silly season, whether we like it or not.

Dougal Paver, MD, Paver Smith

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