Posts Tagged ‘debate’

Battle of Ideas: This Weekend

This weekend I’m taking part in the Battle of Ideas Festival at the Barbican- a fantastic event that gets 350 illustrious speakers from around the globe and all walks of life together to ‘shape the future through debate’. There’s a highly pertinent strand of the programme focussing on Battle for the Media, that will be attempting to wrangle the challenges of living in a post Leveson world. I’ll be on the panel Taming Tabloid Tittle-Tattle at 5pm on Sunday, going head-to-head with Roy Greenslade of the Evening Standard, journo and commentator Patrick Hayes, journo and former press secretary to Paddy Ashdown Jo Phillips, and broadcast and print journalist Nathalie Rothschild.

With sessions over the weekend including Social Media: Good or Bad?, Capitalism: Kill or Cure?, Who Needs Art Anyway? and the ominous sounding Media-Bashing Live, it’s doubtless going to be a weekend to get the cogs whirling and pulses raising. Do come on down if you can.

Election Stuntwatch: The Rise of Old Media

When I was 19, the publicist Theo Cowan – this country’s first pro celebrity PR wrangler, who created the Rank Charm School, an acting school run the Rank Film company that brought the world Roger Moore, Joan Collins, Christopher Lee, Diana Dors and more – granted me an audience in Poland Street. “Keep your clients’ feet on the ground,” he told me. “NEVER let someone believe a good review!”

This is advice that needs to be handed on to Nick Clegg, after last night’s second Leaders’ Debate. He appeared to have spent the week following his remarkable showing in the first debate positively wallowing in the good reviews. Certainly his people believed the good press enough to let Clegg give Brown and Cameron enough room to make up lost ground. That said, he survived pretty well mostly thanks to the MPs’ expenses scandal allowing too many people to see the puppet strings in this campaign. Read the rest of this entry »

Election! The End of the Phony War

There have been weeks and weeks of phony electioneering and, finally, this morning Gordon Brown has told the world what we already knew – the election will be on 6th May.

From the negative electioneering of mashed up, satirical posters, to the dusting down of the old Saatchi creative team – to deliver up what Cameron’s mob hope to be a coup de gras to Labour (as was done under Thatcher) – its been a long and spectacularly phoney war; one that has, alarmingly, only focused on the media process. Read the rest of this entry »

Celebrity and the Dying Art of Debate

I took part in a debate at the University of Westminster last night alongside that wily old fox Max Clifford (the second time I’ve shared a stage with him – it always makes for an interesting experience) and others, discussing Celebrity Brands: Desire, Dollars and Danger?

It was a rather curious and disappointing night; most of the questions from the floor were from people seeking insight via anecdote and I found myself missing the grillings I got from wannabe journalists 15 years ago about the nature of PR. The media has changed, without doubt – celebrity has come to be a sop they use to send us to sleep easily at night, a sort of weak-horlicks fairytale with all the calories and morals removed. Read the rest of this entry »

Borkowski and Clifford Live Streaming Debate

I will be going head to head with Max Clifford to discuss the toxic nature of celebrity at the London College of Communication tonight and, if you don’t have a ticket – they sold out quickly – you’ll be glad to know you haven’t missed out! You can get involved in the heated and controversial debate as it will be streamed live on Ustream.

If you want to see the debate, click on the following link this evening – the show starts at 6 p.m.