Question

You may recall that after Martha Stewart’s criminal conviction in 2004, she announced that she would serve her prison sentence while awaiting the processing of her appeal. After making such public announcement she sought the court’s assistance in commencing her punishment.

Case Discussion Questions:

1. Why do you think that Martha made a public announcement rather than merely proceeding with her plans?

2. Critically evaluate Martha’s public relations during her ordeal. Was her public relations effort successful? What opinions or attitudes did she change?

3. How would you compare or contrast Martha’s public-relations efforts and results with those of the former Enron executives?

Solution Preview

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Answer 1:

Martha was aware that her image was tarnished due to her insider trading activities in ImClone’s stock. This was legally punishable and her negative image would have signaled the end of her organization Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. As such, she strategized to accept the responsibility for her illegal activities and was also ready to serve her prison sentence. She did this to communicate to...

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