The Wall Street Journal asks, “Where Did That Video Spoofing Gore’s Film Come From?
The answer, it appears, is a PR firm that also represents Exxon Mobil:
In an email exchange with The Wall Street Journal, Toutsmith didn’t answer when asked who he was or why he made the video, which has just over 59,000 views on YouTube. However, computer routing information contained in an email sent from Toutsmith’s Yahoo account indicate it didn’t come from an amateur working out of his basement.
Instead, the email originated from a computer registered to DCI Group, a Washington, D.C., public relations and lobbying firm whose clients include oil company Exxon Mobil Corp.
What this means, of course, is that slippery marketing consultants will do a better job covering their tracks in the future.
What it should mean, but won’t, is that when businesses want to counter speech they don’t like, they might be honest about who’s paying for the message. Whoever is behind this spoof (Exxon Mobil denies it’s involved), a little transparency would be refreshing.
on Aug 14th, 2006 at 8:22 pm
“What this means, of course, is that slippery marketing consultants will do a better job covering their tracks in the future.”
You are quite right here. This is just the beginning. The public affairs company, DCI, is tech-savvy, having bought TechCentralStation.com. One of their ‘associates’, James Tobin, is now in jail for electoral violations. Seems he hired a firm to jam the phones of the New Hampshire Democrat party headquarters the night before the US Senate election in 2002. The winner was John Sununu, the Republican. The loser, Jean Shaeen, the Democrat. It was a close elelction. I’m doing some research/blogging on the YouTube post and will report back with any new info.