Where is the line between artificial manipulation and legitimate grassroots mobilization?
Astroturfing - Slippery When Wet - Christie Goldman APR - "When public relations works with a grassroots campaign, it provides support. PR may provide resources or counsel. Itís complicated and it takes time. When public relations works with an Astroturf campaign, it does so to be in control. PR becomes deceptive and manipulative. Itís relatively easy and fast."
Inside PR #21 - Tuesday, August 22, 2006 - David Jones and Terry Fallis - "David and Terry will deal with three different topics on astroturfing over the course of the episode: its definition, the term mobilization, and the importance of transparency."
Astroturfing revisited - Steve Field - Field asks "Can PR pros, collectively, come up with a creed of sorts ó one that defines legitimate grassroots campaigns as distinct from astrotuf campaigns?" and gives his beginning answer
State of Grace: Post-vacation miscellany - Brendan Hodgson - Hodgson agrees with Keith Jackson that the difference is transparency, but thinks it is "virtually impossible" for groups to get away with astroturfing on the social web
Is it (bad) astroturfing? - Steve Field - Field asks "what if a public affairs or lobbying organization uses artificial means to help give a voice to a concern that is out there, but not being articulated in the public square?"
Honesty and Astroturf in a Meritocracy - Kevin Dugan - "There is a difference between legitimate, grass roots organizations, lobbying and astroturfing. Astroturfing lacks transparency and I'm pointing you to this site so you'll know that the public relations industry is intent on stopping it by shining a light on the offenders."
Is Misleading the Public Really Profitable? - Nick Aster - "There shouldnít be a choice between honest public relations and outright skewing of the truth for short-term gain, but as we know from never ending battles with tobacco companies, the latter is all too often common practice."
Corporate spin can come in disguise - Bill Adair, St Petesburg Times, September 10 2006 - An analysis of astroturfing campaigns using op-ed columnists to push their goals. Looks at further astroturfing by the DCI Group