Communication takeaways from 2021’s big crises

Here’s a look at some of the biggest PR and marketing debacles from last year, along with tips on how to keep your organization out of the headlines in 2022.

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5 big crises from 2021

The biggest stories of 2021 weren’t only about the COVID-19 crisis.

After a vaccine rollout promised a return to normal—only to have hopes dashed by the rise of the Delta variant—there has been room for many stories and crises in 2021. There are some unifying themes: political division and anger, corporations betraying public trust, PR gaffes and cybersecurity issues.

So, what are the lessons to be learned from the missteps of the past year?

Let’s take a look at the top crises and what trends they indicate for another uncertain year ahead:

1. Facebook’s whistleblower and the WSJ reporting

The company formerly known as Facebook—now “Meta”—has had another tough year in the press.

Frances Haugen, a former Facebook employee turned whistleblower, blasted the company’s leadership in both interviews with news outlets and before Congress. Her claim that the company consistently puts profits before people sparked increased scrutiny of the company that has had a rash of PR crises since the Cambridge Analytica scandal after the 2016 U.S. election.

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