Wednesday, March 25, 2009...9:38 pm

Tales from the trade press: the opposite of greenwash

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Everyone in journalism knows about greenwash – where companies or governments talk big about their environmental credentials, but actually fail to deliver. Weirdly, I’ve just been experiencing the exact opposite (what’s that even called?).
In my real freelance life – where I write stuff for people that I’ll actually get paid for, unlike here – I’ve been asked to write a piece on recycling for the excellent Packaging News (oh, the glamour!). Pretty straightforward stuff – tracking the progress of the stuff in a green bin to its final destination and describing what happens to it.
So – I’m dealing with companies whose whole purpose is to recycle stuff (which is two thumbs up in the collective estimation right now) and whose web sites spend a lot of time extolling the benefits of recycling (well, it’s their livelihood I suppose, so you’d expect that). But do they return my calls? Not so much.
So far, I’ve had one total cold shoulder (thanks Jayplas)  and two that have been like pulling teeth. (And given that one of these was Tetra Pak, with its very own professional PR agency in tow, that shouldn’t have been the way it went down.)
Don’t get me wrong – no one has to talk to irritating journalists like me, and I don’t believe we in the media have a god-given right to expect answers from anyone (though we do have the right to ask the questions). But seriously – you’re in recycling and someone asks you to pimp the work you do for a recycling feature? And you don’t pick up the phone? That seems pretty dumb.
So, for what it’s worth, they get a nice snarky plug here, and I vent a little. Oh the delights of the freelance life…

1 Comment

  • Their Green credentials are minimal. They’re dealing with waste and making a fortune off the backs of Council Tax payers and anyone who makes their job easier by sorting their rubbish. Central and Local Government and the supermarkets that buy their products (which end up in landfill) are the ones they may jump to attention for.

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