Another Scandal in Need of Crisis Management

In response to the previous post about Public Scandals and PR, there is yet another scandal circulating the media involving Brett Farve. You know, the quarterback who retired then decided he still wanted to play football so he un-retired.

While there is still doubt whether the nude cell phone pictures are from Brett Farve, a colossal scandal is shaping up around this alleged incident involving former Playboy model Jenn Sterger. The naked pictures are reportedly from two years ago, when Farve played for the New York Jets football team and Sterger was a sideline reporter.

This story became public after Sterger casually told Website Deadspin.com that she had been sexting with a professional athlete and claimed Farve was the perpetrator. After this was announced, the story became public and the pictures of Favre’s private parts began being plastered all over the Internet with his name associated with them.

This incident is still under investigation but in the mean time, Favre is in desperate need of a crisis management plan. He has yet to say anything to the media about the situation leaving everyone to guess whether those pictures are of him or someone else. As mentioned in the previous post about scandals and the importance of public relations, people are more likely to believe it is him, given the track record of celebrities who have imploded during a sex scandal, most notably Tiger Woods.

According to Glenn Selig, founder of the crisis management public relations firm, The Publicity Agency, ” If the story continues to explode, he will need to respond or people will believe it is him. What he should say depends on what the truth is.”

Obviously, he needs to respond to this situation and I think it should be sooner than later. This scandal reached national media more than a week ago and it continues to be a hot topic. I found that the word combination “Jenn Sterger pics” are the top search term on Google — a strong indicator this story is not going away.

After hearing about this scandal and the fact that he has yet to respond to his fans and media, I have a feeling that he doesn’t know how to respond. And after witnessing many of scandals involving athletes in the past few years, we all know it’s critical how they respond and when.

So what advice would you give Brett Favre in dealing with this alleged situation? I think whether true or false, Favre needs to stop ignoring the questions and confront the media about this incident because the longer he waits, the more damage it could cause.

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