Ono the Ostrich CRISIS MANAGER
The Internet Newsletter about Crisis Management 
 Editor: Erik Bernstein 
 Publisher: Jonathan Bernstein

"For Those Who Are Crisis Managers,
Whether They Want to be or Not"

© 2016 Jonathan Bernstein

These Hatchimals are Pissed!

Volume XVII, Number 12

December 30, 2016     
Just a Thought  
"The concern of your brain is not to see the actual nature of reality, but to represent the reality to you in such a way that suits your needs." 

- Abhijit Naskar
From the Editor 
Hatchimals. Opinions on them vary from "Aww how cute!" to, "I must burn this." Personally I think it's amusing that someone found a way to recreate the Furby rush and nobody seems to remember that load of nonsense from the 90's, but I digress.

This hard-to-get holiday toy burst onto the scene as the "must-have" item for 2016, and countless parents scoured stores or resorted to paying inflated prices to deliver them to their kiddos in time for the holidays. Hatchimals parent company, Spin Master, has already faced complaints of the toys failing to perform as promised - namely by not escaping the "egg" it's shipped in. Considering this was a major selling point, angry videos, tweets, and shares of all kinds documenting the frustration of parents and agony of small children whose expectations were dashed quickly flooded the internet. 

Not to be outdone, people whose Hatchimals actually...hatched...found a way to hop on the outrage train. Take a good look at our "Just a Thought" for this issue before you watch the video below, one of many where it's claimed that Hatchimals are swearing at their owners.

A SpinMaster spokesperson shared the following statement with CNN:

"Hatchimals communicate by speaking their own unique language, which is made of up of random sounds, and by making other noises, including shivering when they're cold and snoring while they sleep. We can assure consumers that Hatchimals do not curse, nor do they use foul language."

Spinmaster also told CNN that it's had to increase the number of customer service reps it has available as a result of the issues, probably not what they expected when their product first started flying off shelves.

What's the moral of this holiday tale? Perhaps it's that if you're on top, be ready for controversy. Whether real, manufactured, or a blend of both, you shouldn't be surprised when it comes your way.
- EB
Attention any readers in Israel!
Jonathan Bernstein, our company president, will be visiting Israel from May 1-11, 2017, and always loves the chance to meet "Crisis Manager" readers and other PR colleagues when overseas.

If you'd like to connect with him during the trip, write to jonathan@bernsteincrisismanagement.com.
Interested in reprinting BCM articles or blog posts?
We're happy to give permission for material to be reprinted in hard copy or online!

If you find something you would like to reprint, simply submit a request to jonathan@bernsteincrisismanagement.com.


The Bernstein Crisis Management blog , along with our blog at the Free Management Library , are frequently updated and filled with case studies, advice, and the latest news on techniques, threats, and more.

Here, we share a look at some of the most popular posts from recent weeks:  

A famous quote leads to a discussion on preparedness in Crisis Management Quotables...on Building the Ark.

When false 'facts' become headlines, The Fake News Phenomenon has taken over. Join us as we examine this problem and suggest ways to avoid falling victim.

A guest post from Tony Jaques,  Should you blame a crisis on a rogue employee or the system? asks a question faced by French banking giant Société Générale in the wake of its €4.9 billion scandal.

There are many pitfalls in social media, but  3 Tips to Prevent Hashtag Hijacking addresses one of the most common, and dangerous, out there.

Between phones lighting on fire and washers blowing their top, Samsung took quite a beating late in the year. In Samsung's Share Buyback Gambit we look at the company's current situation and what it's doing to address stakeholder confidence around the globe.

How do you deal with allegations that you used a "magic pipe" to illegally dump human waste into the oceans?  Princess Cruises' Crisis Comms for Dirty Secret reviews how this nausea-inducing case is being handled.

Do you have a topic you'd like to see featured in our blogs? Send an email to erik@bernsteincrisismanagement.com and there's a good chance you'll be seeing it right here in the next issue!
Business Announcements 
(aka blatant self-promotion) 
What if you could quickly find out how your stakeholders perceive you during a breaking crisis?

Bernstein Crisis Management now uses online surveys and other tools to get immediate stakeholder perception feedback,  during a breaking crisis, with the option of continuing to monitor perception post-crisis.  

Are There Any Holes in Your Crisis Planning?

Your organization may well have crisis prevention and response-related plans in place - but are you sure they're going to cover all the bases? Bernstein Crisis Management's Crisis Document Audit is a low-cost, flat-rate service which will quickly provide you with a comprehensive analysis of your existing plans and recommendations for improvement.
Contact jonathan@bernsteincrisismanagement.com for more information.

We're Giving Away Keeping the Wolves at Bay and other crisis publications!

Several new items have been added to our FREE crisis management library, including  Keeping the Wolves at Bay, the widely used media-training manual published by Jonathan Bernstein.

To visit the download page, click here.
Social Media Crisis Training

A solid social media manager has quickly become a must-have for organizations of any size, and can make an immense difference by driving in customers and building your positive reputation online.

The problem is, the vast majority are simply not equipped to even identify building crises, much less take the steps necessary to cope with and mitigate the damage that can result.

That's where we come in.

Bernstein Crisis Management is now offering crisis management training for social media managers, both independent and in-house, as well as social media firms.

For an overview of our services, estimates, or more information, contact erik@bernsteincrisismanagement.com

About Us


Jonathan Bernstein is both publisher of Crisis Manager and president of Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc., a national crisis management public relations agency providing 24/7 access to crisis response professionals. The agency engages in the full spectrum of crisis management services: crisis prevention, response, planning & training. He has been in the public relations field since 1982, following five-year stints in both military intelligence and investigative reporting.

Write to Jonathan at:

Erik Bernstein is vice president of Bernstein Crisis Management, and editor of this newsletter.  Working in crisis management since 2009, Erik has watched the internet and social media change the field. Today, he brings that experience to bear assisting clients to protect and grow their reputations using tactics based on real-world knowledge and experience.

Write to Erik at: 

Legal Disclaimer (aka the small print)

All information contained herein is obtained by Jonathan Bernstein from sources believed by Jonathan Bernstein to be accurate and reliable. 


Because of the possibility of human and mechanical error as well as other factors, neither Jonathan Bernstein nor Bernstein Crisis Management is responsible for any errors or omissions. All information is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Bernstein Crisis Management and Jonathan Bernstein make no representations and disclaim all express, implied, and statutory warranties of any kind to the user and/or any third party including, without limitation, warranties as to accuracy, timeliness, completeness, merchantability, or fitness for any particular purpose.  


Unless due to willful tortuous misconduct or gross negligence, Jonathan Bernstein and Bernstein Crisis Management shall have no liability in tort, contract, or otherwise (and as permitted by law, product liability), to the user and/or any third party.  


Under no circumstance shall Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein be liable to the user and/or any third party for any lost profits or lost opportunity, indirect, special, consequential, incidental, or punitive damages whatsoever, even if Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein has been advised of the possibility of such damages.  


A service of this newsletter is to provide news summaries and/or snippets to readers. In such instances articles and/or snippets will be reprinted as they are received from the originating party or as they are displayed on the originating website or in the original article. As we do not write the news, we merely point readers to it, under no circumstance shall Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein be liable to the user and/or any third party for any lost profits or lost opportunity, indirect, special, consequential, incidental, or punitive damages whatsoever due to the distribution of said news articles or snippets that lead readers to a full article on a news service's website, even if Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein has been advised of the possibility of such damages. Authors of the original news story and their publications shall be exclusively held liable. Any corrections to news stories are not mandatory and shall be printed at the discretion of the list moderator after evaluation on a case-by-case basis.


In This Issue
Just A Thought
Attn Readers in Israel
Featured Blogs
Quick Links