This peroration on Public Relations was prompted by the recent Farewell Address of the Managing Editor of the Portsmouth Daily Times, the former “Marketing Communication Specialist,” at Southern Ohio Medical Center. Why Jason Lovins left SOMC in the first place is hard to explain, because billboards and ads on radio and TV hail the local hospital as one of best employers in Ohio to work for, as based on a survey of those very same employees. Or is that just more PR malarkey? Why Lovins would voluntarily leave one of the most popular places in Ohio to work to become the low-paid managing editor on the sinking Portsmouth Daily Times is not easy to understand. Did his leaving SOMC have anything to do with that business over the resignation of the Friends of SOMC? That was a public relations mess, which he as SOMC’s Marketeing Communication Specialist must have had some responsibility for.
The title of Lovins’ swan song in the PDT is “It Really Has Been a Short Nine Months,” in which he was speaking only for himself of course. It was a very long nine months for some of us. On the basis of the puffery of himself and the Times reporters in which he indulges in his Farewell Address, maybe he should have called it “A Labor of Lovins.” No wonder he was such an unqualified success, since every reporter he worked with at the PDT was so “remarkably talented, hard-working,” etc., and were “experienced journalists providing quality every day.” Well, maybe not every day, because Lovins fails to point out that during his short nine months the incredibly shrinking PDT shrank further, not in size but in frequency, from a seven-day to a six-day-a-week newspaper. Why were those Times reporters so good, according to Lovins? “Largely because they either grew up or have lived a long time here and feel their roots dive very deep into our soil as well as our souls.” This is the kind of PR crap you get from a PR person who is trying his best to put a PR spin on what to outside observers looks like his losing his job. Lovins’ Farewell Address is his PR effort to turn his personal shit into gold. Never mind his reporters digging into our soil and souls. How about their digging into a story? In the story Frank Lewis wrote in July 13, 2006, about the resignation of the Friends of the SOMC, he typically gagged rather than dug. Hardly anybody to this day knows what the hell that was all about. When a major advertiser like the SOMC and bigwigs like Robert Dever are involved, a PDT reporter doesn’t do any digging and finding out things he would not be able to print anyway.