A PR consultancy has been rightly condemned for paying for favourable media mentions. In my comment to this post at PR Machine, I suggest it’s the agentry aspect that separates Max Clifford from the rest of us in the PR business (though he’s no doubt happier with the money he earns).
There’s a parallel debate in the UK over the independence of certain hotel guides, sparked by the one that does not solicit payments for placement. They’re right: it is a matter of trust. Can we trust the media to be independent; can we trust public relations to be transparent?