"Public Relations," experts such as this title's readers will tell you, "it's not just about images. It's about actions."
The best PR evokes good words with good actions - for example, "MTV sure is generous and socially engaging, what with the free T-shirt they gave me when they registered me to vote at that rockin' party."
The worst PR, though, evokes bad words with bad actions - for example, "MTV has managed to whitewash Maui, HI, removing all troublesome minorities."
Unfortunately, the former Music Television network (recently updated to MySpace Teenagers of Viacom) has deftly accomplished the "bad image through bad actions" angle with its new "reality" show, Maui Fever. In the show, which portrays "reality," seven young people in Maui surf, party, and have sex.
Realistic, right? But through the magic of MTV's patented Ethnic Cleanse-O-Vision, the entire cast of the show is white. Maui, on the other hand, is only about one-third white, a fact that has not gone unnoticed by the local populace - particularly the majority of the local populace that is, as we pointed out, not white. Their grumblings have stirred up bad press for MTV, which trotted out the show's creator to explain that "a lot of the people we wanted [for a more diverse cast] didn't want to be filmed."
You know those dark Hawaiian natives fear your mysterious modern ways, MTV! They were likely too busy carving whimsical statues from coconut shells and such.
Perhaps if MTV mentioned how "a bunch of my friends are Hawaiian," all would be forgiven.
PR Play Rating
3. On the right track