The BP PR Machine

The BP PR Machine

Mother Jones‘s Mac McClelland reports on BP’s disinformation campaign in the Gulf.


Although President Obama recently contested the statement that the administration has been “slow or lacked urgency,” a majority of those living by the Gulf Coast say that the administration’s official stance couldn’t be further from the truth. Speaking with Laura Flanders of GritTV, Mac McClelland, Mother Jones human rights reporter, says, “BP is obviously the biggest villain, but of course people are incredibly disappointed with Obama’s response.”

Much of that comes from a lack of transparency and a disinformation campaign from BP—the "BP PR Machine." BP told McClelland, who has been reporting on the ground on the Gulf Coast, that she needed a BP liaison to escort her to a public beach. BP countered her public beach argument with “but it’s BP’s oil.” BP told a local official that oil washing up on the shore was not oil but instead a natural algae bloom, red tide or mud. With the likelihood that the spill could continue into August, many are considering moving for their safety and livelihood and McClelland compares the disaster to Hurricane Katrina. “They are going to be uprooted,” says McClelland. “The human impact is just staggering.”

—Clarissa León

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