Ross S. Irvine

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Ross S. Irvine is President of ePublic Relations Ltd and Public Relations Management Ltd.

In a biographical note ePublic Relations is described as "a company he established to explore and explain how social activists use the Internet to promote their causes so effectively" while Public Relations Management Ltd. "provides traditional PR services". [1]

According to the note "Ross served as director of media relations for the Canadian Life and Health Insurance, provided PR counsel and services to a variety of corporate and public service clients, worked as an account executive and copywriter for one of western Canada¹s largest advertising agencies, and was a speech writer for senior government officials and business leaders."

"Ross received an Honors B.A. in journalism from the University of Western Ontario in 1975. Audiences for his presentations on PR have included the Wise Use Leadership Conference, the Ontario Association of Professional Planners, and the North West Territories Mining Association," the profile states.

(The preliminary agenda for the 1993 Wise Use Leadership conference in Nevada listed Irvine speaking in a media workshop and identified him as being from "Enviro-Scan (Canada)"). Download a pdf of the Wise Use Leadership conference program - 140k file (See Wise Use movement for more information).

In 1991 Jim Lohman, writing in the Ontario newspaper The Record, reported on a "pro-pesticide" Enviroscan newsletters published by Irvine. Irvine told Lohman that he was on "an almost personal campaign" to defend pesticides against environmentalists campaigns for tighter restrictions. Irvine attributed a rise in malaria cases in Ceylon to the 1964 ban on DDT and complained that further restrictions could be based on emotionalism not science. Irvine told Lohman that he had some "who deal in the chemical field". The Enviroscan newsletter, he said, was "funded entirely out of my own pocket."

Irvine, who describes himself as a "corporate warrior", appends as the footer to his emails the quote: "Public relations is war. It's about winners and losers. Winners gain public, media, and regulatory acceptance and support for their products, services,and organizations. Losers see their products, services, and organizations sacrificed on the altar of public opinion, pilloried by the media, and trampled by excessive regulation." (1)

Irvine is an enthusiastic supporter of the work by Gary Johns from the conservative Australian think-tank the Institute of Public Affairs in proposing a range of administrative changes by governments to constrain the advocacy work of environmental, human rights and development organisations. Based on Johns work, Irvine drafted a Non-government government (NGO) / Civil Society Accountability and Transparency Report. [2]

Irvine suggests some possible uses for such reports. "First, PR folks, politicians and others who deal with NGOs can ask NGOs to complete, certify and sign it. Second, it can be used as a basis for creating internal files on NGOs. Three, it can be used to ask questions at public meetings and other forums," he wrote. [3]

In May 2002 Irvine was a keynote speaker at the annual conference of the Public Relations Institute of New Zealand. In his presentation Irvine identified "charitable organization legislation" as one of the key focal points to consider in New Zealand. Excerpt from Irvine's presentation

When the New Zealand government tabled a Charities Bill in Parliament, the New Zealand Green Party was alarmed that advocacy organisations would be penalised by the bill provisions. "There is a real danger that community groups performing advocacy work will not be eligible for charitable status. Is this an attempt to control or kill off groups who carry out lobbying alongside their services function?," said Sue Bradford, Green Party Spokesperson for the Community & Voluntary Sector. [4]

External links

Articles by Irvine