Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Where are all the good publicists? Please protect our Black athletes and entertainers.

I am not mad at Larry Johnson, former RB for the Kansas City Chiefs. He tweeted what he wanted and how he felt-as ignorant as it may be. However, I am upset that his publicist let him get away with this social media faux pas. There have been red flags waving that he was on the path to image-destruction. Why wasn't it anyone out there protecting this star athlete who was on his way to breaking records with the Kansas City Chiefs? When your personal image gets in the way of making money-why even have a publicist who can't protect and control your brand? Isn't that what they are paid to do? If he was a "good guy" at least in the public eye, there would not have been a petition from thousands of fans to keep him from breaking a franchise record by removing him from the team.

I am just sick and tired of hearing about these star athletes and talented entertainers doing stupid things that are keeping them from making money-especially when the incident could have been avoided. Publicists what are you doing-or not doing- to protect our black athletes? I am a true sports fan and I love exceptional athletes, but you don't hear about Peyton Manning shooting himself at a club, Brett Favre owning a dog-fighting club in his home, Tony Romo sharing details of his arrest, suspension, and his incarceration on Facebook, or Matt Ryan in a heated exchange with someone on Twitter. I am sure they all have their troubles that are covered up immediately, so why can't our superstar Black athletes?

If Twitter is changing the PR industry, why aren't publicists monitoring what their clients are saying? There are several Twitter applications that help monitor brands and what people are saying. Use them! While the NFL has set up a new rule saying that players, coaches, as well as league officials are forbidden from posting tweets or Facebook updates 90 minutes before the game, the media and fans are still pay attention all of the time. Don't let something as simple as social media or bad judgment on or off the field prevent your clients from being successful. If you truly care, do everything in your power to protect them from making mistakes today that could effect their family, fame, fortune and future.

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