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Since the incredible images from the Chilean copper mine, as the last of the 33 miners were brought to the surface, there has been much debate in and about the media. How will the miners react to their unrequested celebrity; was the coverage overkill; will they stick together and make the most of the potential opportunities?
Rory Carroll's post-event analysis makes interesting reading - in particular, the quote form El Pais writer, Hernan Rívera Letelier, urging the miners to grab hold of their families as they face the media "hell" that now confronts them. Amongst the comments below the online version is one from a JM Rodgers, harking back to a less happy outcome for his great-great-grandfather in a 19th Century mining disaster in County Durham.
Equally interesting is PR guru, Mark Borkowski's take on the celebrity potential. His warning for them to 'play the long game' and stick together certainly makes sense. I just wonder whether he will be hoping that his office phone will be one of those ringing should they heed his sound advice to "assemble the best legal and brand advisers to protect their interests..."? I also wonder about his recommendation that they all 'learn or brush up' their English - correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Mandarin Chinese the most spoken language in the world (and Lord knows there are plenty of mining crises to go around on that continent)? Thankfully, the miners already speak number three in the charts - Spanish.
But let's not become mired in the inevitable backwash of analysis, minute observation and News-of-the-World-like revelations. This is one event which really is a cause for global celebration - even if it's just for 15 minutes.
Published 18th October, 2010