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Hide your shame: Thai Airways and how to screw up damage control


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See no evil...
See no evil... - (Thinkstock / Modified by Joe Ross)

A recent incident at Thai Airways led to the injury of several passengers and the airline's response probably wasn't what you would expect.

I'm no stranger to public relations, having interned at small PR company after college and spent the better part of seven years on the receiving end of myriad press releases. When I say "myriad," I mean more than the uninitiated probably think could possibly be written in a span of 100 years.

And if there's one thing I've learned about damage control during that time, it's that the best policy is to admit it, explain it and get down to the business of proving it was a one-off mistake and not illustrative of a deeper problem.

That's why this Thai Airways story is so weird to me. As the Guardian's Will Coldwell reported on Monday, the airline follow up a runway incident in which several passengers were injured by blacking out its own logo.

The practice is apparently common among airlines, at least according to an Alitalia spokesperson that discussed a similar incident with The Telegraph earlier this year.

As for me, I'm going to stick to admit, explain and move on. It feels less sleazy.

And requires substantially less paint.

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