Tuesday, April 2, 2013

BlueSky Communications deletes association with Financial Post author from website

A quick break from our Vacation to bring you an update on the Financial Post story we profiled last week.

As you will recall, the Financial Post ran a story titled "Home is where the retirement money is". The author of the column was Denise Deveau.

On March 28th and March 29th we posted that sharp-eyed blogosphere sleuths had noticed that the article had failed to mention that the couple in the story happened to work for the very mortgage broker company that was so prominently profiled. With that knowledge, the article appears to be little more than a glorified ad for the mortgage broker. More disturbingly, the author  was a freelance reporter who appeared to work for two communications companies who specialize in gaining media attention for their clients.

We questioned whether or not this created a conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest for the Financial Post.

This week the Financial Post corrected their website version of the article to note the connection between the couple and the company:

Meanwhile it appears the author's connections with one of those communications company's has now been erased.

BlueSky Communications promotes itself by telling clients that:
Whether we are securing regular media coverage for you, making you the topic of online discussions or developing impactful marketing pieces, our integrated, big-picture approach is intrinsically linked to where you want to bring your business... Our outstanding results speak for themselves. We are particularly talented in getting continuous media coverage for our clients that communicates directly to the target market. And after engaging us for a period of time, you will see the impressive impact media coverage has on your business.
One of BlueSky's employee's is/was Denise Deveau - the author of the Financial Post article and a freelance writer. Here is what BlueSky used to say Deveau could do for their clients:
Denise has over 20 years of journalism and corporate communications experience. She handles a wide variety of writing and research assignments in the high tech, financial services, retail, government, education, oil and gas, and consumer sectors Whether it’s a thought provoking article, or compelling marketing collateral, Denise is able to deliver an effective piece that will meet your business objectives.
We say "used to" because Deveau has been deleted from the BlueSky Communications website. Here are screenshots of the eight members of the BlueSky team from their website last week:

Deveau is in the second row, second person. When you clicked on the link to her name you were taken to this page which described Deveau's talents. Here is what it used to say:

Well... that's all gone now.

If you go to the BlueSky "team" page, any mention of Deveau has disappeared. Eight staff members have been reduced to seven:

And the BlueSky page that used to contain Deveau's profile now says 'Not Found':

Like from waves on the sandy beach, the tracks are slowly made to disappear. But the questions remain.

Was there an attempt to leverage benefit from the reporter's access to the media via her associations with various communications companies?

BlueSky Communications advertises that they "secure regular media coverage" for their clients and that Deveau was a member of their team who (up until this week) "is able to deliver an effective piece that will meet your business objectives."

This certainly appears to be exactly what the article in the Financial Post did for Invis - Team Rob Regan-Pollack.

Why has Deveau suddenly been deleted from the BlueSky Communications website?

And doesn't the Financial Post owe it's readers an explanation for exactly what happened here?


Email: village_whisperer@live.ca
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  1. +1, Thanks Whisperer.

  2. Great stuff Whisperer!

    An Observer

  3. I salute the web master of BlueSky Communications, who did a thorough clean up! Armatures often left trace of delete info here / there.

    Great job, Whispers!

    1. Harvey Keitel (ala Pulp Fiction) could not have done a better job at cleaning up the evidence than BlueSky's web master.

      Seeking Knowledge...

  4. Wonderful job. I would love to see what the Financial Post has to say.

    1. I just noticed on the Financial Post article that Denise Deveau's picture has been replaced with a "NP" icon. Denise Deveau's name is still listed on the story, however, when clicking on her name, stories written by "PostMedia News" are displayed. Perhaps this is a technical error, but I'm wondering if Denise will continue writing for the Financial Post. She has written a number of good articles on labour shortages in Canada and the value of university education. I have enjoyed reading some of her articles, but I do not appreciate undisclosed advertising in news.

  5. Henry David Thoreau: "The editor is a preacher whom you voluntarily support. Your tax is commonly one cent daily, and it costs nothing for pew hire. But how many of these preachers preach the truth? I repeat the testimony of many an intelligent foreigner, as well as my own convictions, when I say, that probably no country was ever rubled by so mean a class of tyrants as, with a few noble exceptions, are the editors of the periodical press in this country. And as they live and rule only by their servility, and appealing to the worse, and not the better, nature of man, the people who read them are in the condition of the dog that returns to his vomit."

  6. Who needs a flux capacitor and banana peels when there is the wayback machine.


  7. Denise Deveau also scrubbed from Echo Communications

  8. Yet, another great find!!! You've uncovered quite a few scammers already, and I'm thinking this is just the tip of the iceberg! There are still lots underneath that iceberg I'm sure. Unethical! Disgusts me!

  9. Organizations like Bluesky are no different than any other sales organization. Selling themselves out to the highest bidder. Really, what value do they add to anything except lying?

  10. Sherlock homes has competition Whisperer.

    Great find and great work on exposing pr stunts that cloak themselves as news items.

  11. http://video.theloop.ca/home/watch/whistler-real-estate-plummets-up-to-68-per-cent/2273064302001/#.UVuh6ZETEb0

    Link to recent segment on ctv bc news at 6

    They actually run a story on whistler prices plummeting over 68%

    If the link doesn't work just google 'whistler real estate plummets'

    Sorry, hard to add hyperlinks properly with damn smartphone!

  12. Kudos on really great work. "Journalism" today does need full-time sleuths, and real estate is a slimy business heading into desperate times....

  13. You can't find this article anywhere if you search for Denise Deveau's articles. http://business.financialpost.com/author/denisedeveaufp/

  14. Awesome. I would love to hear what they have to say for themselves.