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News :: Human Rights
I Was Hired By SF to Delete Postings
05 Aug 2007
(Repost of article deleted from Craigslist)

This should make you wonder about some of the negative web activity that has been going on since 9/11.
I Was Hired By SF to Delete Postings

http://sfbay.craigslist.org/sfc/com/189951276.html

Reply to: comm-189951276 [at] craigslist.org
Date: 2006-08-03, 9:35PM PDT


I work for a marketing company called Tomkins and Scott LLC. We are not a typical marketing company. Many of our campaigns involve what is known as "black PR" - a covert type of marketing campaign designed to influence and sway public opinion through covert means. Although many of the techniques we use are not specifically in violation of the law, the fact that many of the clients we have give us money for black PR campaigns is.

I have decided to come out and tell the public about what my company is doing because I believe it is unethical and wrong.

Several years ago we received a contract from an agency with the city of San Francisco. The purpose of this contract was to block the spread of any information which spreads a negative light on the city, or might adversely affect its burgeouning tourism industry or robust real estate market.

Members of the agency were concerned about community forums like Craigslist which are read by millions of people. Our job at Tomkins and Scott, my job specifically, was to monitor Craigslist and summarily flag all postings which reflected negatively upon the city in any way. I am going public with this because, after 3 years of being a censor for Craigslist, I believe what we are doing is totally wrong.

I can tell you that the agency of the city of San Francisco which contracted us is not the only government agency to be engaging in black PR operations. If you knew the full list of agencies hired by us and sister firms you would be absolutely shocked. If the average citizen understood the extent to which the information being presented to him or her is being filtered and skewed they would be up in arms immediately.

This work is in the public domain
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