Last week Anna Griffin (not to be confused by the paper company of the same name) at the Oregonian wrote a story about public relations “flaks” placing stories.  She called out the Metropolitan Group, which has offices in Portland, Chicago, and Washington D.C., because they claim on their Web site they placed a story in USA Today.  

Where do we, as PR professionals, draw the line?  It’s industry jargon to say we placed a story, if we worked with a reporter, helped schedule interviews, provided background and research, and answered questions.

It’s our job, as PR professionals, to be as helpful as possible to reporters, provide them with real news, and be respectful of their deadlines and editorial ethics.

Does that mean Anna Griffin has never worked with a PR professional?  Or that she just doesn’t like the word “placed”?  Is this considered spin?  If so, does it suck?