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  Report: Advertising Industry

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Unlike in the United Kingdom, where members of the PR Consultants Association are required to have an updated, published list of all clients, the U.S. Council of PR decided against a proposal for the disclosure of client lists. Therefore the worlds biggest PR agencies, which are mostly U.S. based, are still in the position to make a secret of their clients.

Although public relations activity is mostly associated with marketing and issues management for corporate firms, also PR for nations, politicians and NGOs is common. Among the first to pursue PR for nations was Edward L. Bernays, one of the founders of modern public relations. Besides his activity in the Creel-Committee, which was responsible for the American propaganda during World War I, he also worked as a PR consultant for Lithuania and India. With his engagement for United Fruit he was moreover actively involved in the Cold War - especially in the overthrow of the Guatemalan government of Guzman.

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Advertising Industry
-3   PR Firms and their Mission
-2   Public Relations and Propaganda
-1   Hill & Knowlton
0   Public Relations Clients
+1   Public Relations and the Advertising Industry
+2   Cultural Opposition
+3   RTMark and Adbusters at the WTO Conference in Seattle
United Brands Company
American corporation formed in 1970 in the merger of United Fruit Company and AMK Corporation. United Fruit Company, the main company, was founded in 1899 producing and marketing bananas grown in the Caribbean islands, Central America, and Colombia. The principal founder was Minor C. Keith, who had begun to acquire banana plantations and to build a railroad in Costa Rica as early as 1872. In 1884 he contracted with the Costa Rican government to fund the national debt and to lay about 50 more miles of track. In return he received, for 99 years, full rights to these rail lines and 800,000 acres of virgin land, tax exempt for 20 years. By 1930 it had absorbed 20 rival firms and became the largest employer in Central America. As a foreign corporation of conspicuous size, United Fruit sometimes became the target of popular attacks. The Latin-American press often referred to it as el pulpo ("the octopus"), accusing it of exploiting labourers, bribing officials, and influencing governments during the period of Yankee "dollar diplomacy" in the first decades of the 20th century.