Wal-Mart Enlists Bloggers in P.R. Campaign

Published: March 7, 2006

Brian Pickrell, a blogger, recently posted a note on his Web site attacking state legislation that would force Wal-Mart Stores to spend more on employee health insurance. "All across the country, newspaper editorial boards — no great friends of business — are ripping the bills," he wrote.

It was the kind of pro-Wal-Mart comment the giant retailer might write itself. And, in fact, it did.

Several sentences in Mr. Pickrell's Jan. 20 posting — and others from different days — are identical to those written by an employee at one of Wal-Mart's public relations firms and distributed by e-mail to bloggers.

Under assault as never before, Wal-Mart is increasingly looking beyond the mainstream media and working directly with bloggers, feeding them exclusive nuggets of news, suggesting topics for postings and even inviting them to visit its corporate headquarters.


Interesting Story

Of course, we've already seen how this works with the so-called Rosemead PRIDE letters to the editor.  Many Wal-Mart supporters clearly aren't bright enough to come up with their own arguments, so they repeat verbatim what Wal-Mart or Mike Lewis tells them to say.