Please go read Jenny's blog, and then come back for the rest of this post.
…wow, right? Can you believe what a gigantic Douchecanoe Jose Martinez at Brand Link Communications is?
I've worked with PR people my whole life, and most of them are really great. They're enthusiastic, they understand that not everyone cares about the thing they have to promote, and — more than anything else — they're nice to everyone, because their entire job is to get people excited about whatever they're selling, if not now, than in the future.
Then there are the people at Brand Link Communications, like Jose, who apparently think that threatening and insulting the very people they're hoping to work with is the best way to conduct business. Of course, Brand Link Communications seems to think that spamming hundreds of bloggers with the same incorrectly-spelled e-mail (that reads like it was written by a 12 year-old) is actually doing good work for their client, so maybe they think threatening and insulting people is equally effective.
I've encountered people like this in the thirty years I've worked in the Entertainment Industry: they're self-important, arrogant, unprofessional, and have convinced themselves that, because they have some kind of "access" to celebrities, they're more important than people they consider "normal". This quote from Jose pretty much embodies that attitude:
maybe you should be flattered that you are even viewed relevant enough
to be pitched at all instead of alienated PR firms and PR people – who are actually the livelihood of any journalists business.
The arrogance and nerve of Jose Martinez is just appalling to me. Even if he truly believes this idiocy, he should know better than to actually say it in an e-mail, especially if he is a Vice President at the firm.
Yes, that's right: Jose Martinez is a Vice President at Brand Link Communications. This is the kind of person this company sees fit to promote to a position of great experience and authority.
Let me give you the correct response, Jose:
I'm sorry we bothered you. We'll take you off our mailing list. All the best.
See? It's not that tough, is it? I mean, unless you think your precious little ego is more important than the clients you represent, and you're profoundly unprofessional and unqualified for your job. Also, a free tip from me to you: Don't be a dick, Jose, and especially don't Twitter at me a big stupid lie that insults my intelligence after the fact. Don't make your #PRFail worse with your pathetic #PRFailDamageControlFail.
There are a lot of very good publicists and publicity firms out there, who represent their clients with passion and pride. They respect the people they pitch, and they respect the clients they're working for.
Then there are these clowns, who think that bullying and insulting people they think are beneath them is how you do business.
And that, more than anything else, is what makes me furiously angry: Jose Martinez believes that he is "the livelihood of any journalists business", so of course he can insult and threaten someone who he's decided is just some blogger who needs him more than he needs her. (This is further evidence of how unqualified this idiot is: not only did his company — where he is a Vice President and Media Director — pitch The Bloggess, they apparently didn't know that she is massively popular online, in no small part because she calls out PR idiots for doing exactly what his company did.)
If Jenny didn't have a huge following of people who adore her and got furiously angry like I did, nobody would ever know about this, and Jose Martinez would be high-fiving his bros about how he put that fucking bitch in her place. Maybe that's what Jose Martinez and Brand Link Communications was counting on. Maybe they're used to pushing people around, insulting them, and treating them like they should be grateful that they were spammed. Maybe they think they can be arrogant, condescending assholes without any consequences at all.
Maybe they just got a nice, loud, unambiguous wake-up call. Maybe future prospective clients will read this post and the other posts that are all over the Internet 12 hours later about Jose's treatment of Jenny when they're considering what firm they'll hire to represent them. Maybe future clients won't want to be associated with arrogant, unprofessional, self-important PR hacks.
While I was writing this, Jenny updated her blog. Jose and Brand Link Communications got a demonstration of relevancy that was apparently long overdue, and they apologized to Jenny. Good. That was the right thing to do, but my larger point still stands: would that apology have happened if Jenny didn't have an army of readers and Twitter followers to stand up for her? I seriously doubt it.