Although the two sides of any labor battle have to solve their problems at the negotiating table, the public relations campaign can be equally important. While the public doesn’t exactly have a say in what the two sides agree to, a well-coordinated public relations blitz can force one side to re-examine their offers. The NFLPA is developing such a PR campaign to get the fans on their side and prevent a potential lockout that could wear down the will of the union members.
Tomorrow (Tuesday, January 18), the NFLPA is sponsoring a day they’re calling Let Us Play Day. This day will feature a massive web-based onslaught of tweeting and Facebook’ing:
— Tell EVERYONE you can about www.NFLLockout.com and how they can sign the Petition to Block the Lockout.
— Donate your Facebook status by posting: “Today is LET US PLAY Day. Help NFL Players and Fans Block the Lockout. Visit NFLLockout.com and sign the Petition.”
— Tweet the following: “Today is #LETUSPLAY Day. Help #NFL Players & Fans #BlocktheLockout. Visit NFLLockout.com and sign the Petition.”
—You can participate in a #LETUSPLAY Chat with me and other players on Facebook and Twitter that day. We will also be taking fan questions from Twitter and Facebook and responding to them on Ustream and our YouTube page.
The day will involve a variety of chatting and tweeting with NFLPA players and executives as the players association attempts to ratchet up public awareness of a potential lockout and also public pressure on NFL owners. It looks like abasic public relations move, but bringing any kind of pressure on the owners could potentially force them back to the bargaining table in some form or fashion.
At the end of the day, the important thing is getting the two sides together to discuss their differences like adults and figure out a solution. A deal can be done and it can be done without costing the league and its players money. The two sides just need to move past the sabre-rattling.