Monday, December 13, 2004

Crisis Public Relations and the Art of Deflection

I like Karl Malone. He seems funny, he seems nice to the public ... and at times, he seems a little bit scary - come on, he hunts squirrels and he drives a big-rig. That combo is just a little frightening. Karl seems like the type of player you'd want to go hang out with, go on a hunting trip with - just a fun guy.

Oh, and he reminds me of Bill Laimbeer, who was just an all-around thuggish basketball player, but never slacked off while playing.

So, apparently there's this big to-do right now with Kobe Bryant and The Mailman. The Mailman supposedly hit on Kobe's wife.

Now, reading the article, I believe the situation is being blown out of proportion. But, not from hurt feelings, but purposely.

It's called the "big lie" tactic - I forget which book I read it in when I was younger, but the theory is that you tell small little truths, and then spring the big lie. It's a great diversionary tactic, and always seems to work.

How does this relate to Kobe and public relations? It's a simple art of deflection - bring up other issues, so people stop concentrating on a problem or crisis that you are having. It sometimes works, and other times backfires. It usually backfires when you are deflecting and taking no responsibility. In this case, Kobe is trying to get the attention off the many issues with the LA Lakers and himself, particularly the infidelity with said wife that's been harassed by Karl.

Nice try, Kobe, but no cigar.

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