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December 8, 2014
What’s In a Name? They Should Have Known
 
Thank heaven for Twitter, but why was it necessary for “Strange Fruit,” the founding name of an Austin, Texas hospitality-focused PR firm, to be called out on Twitter after the better part of two years in use? Hospitality — around a ghastly song about lynching? Strange Fruit, advises the Austin Statesman, “represents some of the area’s best-known restaurants, including Barley Swine, Odd Duck, Lenoir and Banger’s…” After the Twitter uproar, it’s been taken off the web.

Oh my, how far we have yet to travel in some parts of America. Ali Slutsky and Mary Mickel, the PR operatives in Austin, “thought the term ‘strange fruit’ really could stand for someone who stood out in a crowd…”  But good PR is about knowing meanings and avoiding affronts, isn’t it?

12/9/14 - The proprietors have now announced that they've changed the name of their firm to Perennial Public Relations.

(Photo: Ali Slutsky and Mary Mickel, from MTV.com)

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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