From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
Wal-Mart corporate is revving up the spin machine
September 16, 2005 11:31 PM
The battle lines are taking shape in the emerging media battle surrounding our new Wal-Mart film. Lee Scott seems to be revelling in all the excitement, dropping hints of their "secret spin strategy."
Two months ago, we called Lee Scott's office (the CEO) to request an interview. After several phone calls with Mona Williams, his spokesperson, he declined, but Mona promised: "We will be very aggressive in getting our side of the story out. We will do it separately where we can control what we say and how it's presented."
They spend $3.8 million a day ($1.4 billion a year!) getting their side of the story out, mostly through lavish commercials, so I've been quite intrigued as to what "very aggressive" might mean.
Since then, they've done a few things. First, came the rush-job spin conference set for the weekend before the film's launch. Still no word on where the conference will be. Not even a city.
Then they hired the massive PR firm, Edelman, who was undoubtedly responsible for Wal-Mart's very public generosity in the aftermath of the Katrina nightmare. Between the Walton family and the company, they contributed $23 million -- a great investment... for less than a week's worth of advertising, they've gotten amazingly good press out of it. Lee Scott is even boasting to his employees how the "generosity" has influenced his critics: It's "shut them up for a while."
Then Wal-Mart set up a blog called (and I'm not making this up) "Stories of Hope" where they go into astonishing detail of their generosity, such as this slice of cheesiness: "Wal-Mart has donated $17 million in cash to the relief effort, but it is the down-home caring that makes a difference."
Now, thanks to Kevin at the Always Low Prices blog, we know that Mike Krempasky was hired two weeks ago to, as he describes it, "help companies appropriately shift conversations online, to not only build a better image - but to actually be better online citizens." Just yesterday, Mike blogged about working for Wal-Mart.
Why is Mike Krempasky interesting? He's the right-winger behind Rathergate.com, one of the bloggers at RedState.org, and a hardcore Republican operative.
What do I think Wal-Mart corporate's got cooking? Their own movie, of course!
Wal-Mart corporate is revving up the spin machine
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Read the 9 comments.
I would like to know how many of those stranded in New Orleans were wal-mart employees who are surviving paycheck to paycheck with no means of escape. I bet a lot.
Fri Sep 30 2005 3:36 PM
Do any of you work at walmart??
Tue Oct 4 2005 11:31 PM
I work at Wal-Mart. As the price of gas goes up, our hours go down. I work at a distribution center where local stores are replenished. My job is to load the trucks headed for the stores, a conveyer brings the boxes down, and I load them in the trucks by hand. Wal mart has made the conveyers run faster in an attempt to get us out of the center faster. Basically, we are working harder, for less money! This position is getting harder to do. Consider the fact that lawnmowers, tv's, and other large objects come at you with only about one second to grab it and find a spot for it before you have another box there.Many people are getting repetetive injuries and they dissmiss it as something that happened while we were not at work to avoid paying workman's comp.You don't have to go to a foreign country to see wal mart's sweatshops, just go to one of their distribution centers.
Wed Oct 5 2005 8:42 AM
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN
MY NAME IS DONDEE CARANDANG I WORK AT WAL-MART #1364 IVE BEEN WORK FOR WAL-MART FOR 2MONTHS AND YESTERDAY I GOT TERMINATED FOR USING THE PUSH CART TO PULL CARTS IN THE STORE AND THE CARTS HIT THE EXIT DOORS AND BROKE THE GLASS WHILE THE CATS WENT INTO THE STORE KIND I GET TERMINATED FOR DOING SOMETING ACCIDENTAL PLAESE LET ME KNOW
Sun Oct 9 2005 2:52 PM
If Walmart is so great, where is their competition? out of business and how low can prices go before people start complaining.
You can only pay so little to those people from other countries. Have you seen the quality of items at walmart? downright horrible.
oh, I get it now, lower prices = cheap stuff that falls apart in a week.
Wed Nov 16 2005 8:49 PM
Wal-Mart has gone to hell in a handbasket carried by Mr. Scott. Not only do they treat their employees like modern day slaves....They hired a gay marketing firm & they donate millions I repeat MILLIONS of dollars to support same sex marriage. I do not plan on spending one more red cent at Wal-Mart. I am sure Sam Walton has rolled over in his grave many times. Hopefully employees & consumers will get fed up enough & just walk out & refuse to spend money at any Wal-Mart. T
Thu Sep 14 2006 4:15 PM
Fri Sep 22 2006 9:54 AM
Sat Dec 2 2006 2:25 AM
Yes you can get fired for using a cart machine to bring them into the store why not hand push them into the store. the cart machine is for outside only. see to many ppl rely on the cart machine don't be lazy.
Mon May 21 2007 1:39 AM