The Thai Air Logo Paint Job, Crisis Communications, and Social Media

A couple of Tweets I appended to my last post:

A WSJ Southeast Asia Real Time post explains that such logo masking was once more common. But that was before social media:

A common practice by airlines trying to reduce negative publicity about accidents – masking their company logo on a plane involved in a mishap – is proving ineffective in the social-media age, when passengers and onlookers can snap photos and put out unflattering comments to a global audience within minutes of an incident.

And:

It is now not considered best practice in the airline community to do this,” said John Bailey, the managing director of Icon International, a communications firm that also advises airlines on crisis management.

He pointed out that passengers and airport visitors commonly have smartphones with cameras, marking quite a different world than two decades ago when airlines commonly masked their logos on damaged planes.

“The environment has changed, and the challenge for airlines is infinitely more complicated. If an accident happens in a visible and populated area, the airline can’t hope to match the speed of response of eyewitnesses and survivors,” said Mr. Bailey, who previously worked with the International Air Transport Association.

Published by Newley

Hi. I'm Newley Purnell. I cover technology and business for The Wall Street Journal. I use this site to share my stories and often blog about the books I'm reading, tech trends, sports, travel, and our dog Ginger. For updates, get my weekly email newsletter.

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