Laura Vozzella’s column in the Baltimore Sun does a great job of capturing the PR firestorm over a local restaurateur’s decision to trademark “Hon.”
Rather than debate the merits of the decision to claim rights to the word and the way the restaurateur went about defending her point of view, look at how PR missteps and social media are intensifying this storm.
Many people continue to say “any publicity is good publicity.” BP doesn’t think so, and the owner of this restaurant (and gift shop and festival) surely won’t believe it when this fiasco eventually fizzles out.
The mishandling of the news led to a spoof Twitter account, boycott the restaurant Facebook page, blog posts, newspaper comment section posts, a protest and a string of critical Yelp “reviews,” all within hours of this firestorm. Fanning the flames even more, the restaurant’s graphic design (and presumably not PR) consultant weighed in with a profanity-laced post (click on comments to find the one from “springray“) that went viral, while a rejected Yelp review found a new life and many more eyeballs on countless blogs.