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The Internet has fast become the new way that the world finds out most of it’s information. Newspapers are steadily becoming dinosaurs with subscriptions falling to an all time low in the last few years. Many newspapers are in danger of closing down if they don’t revamp and either go online or market their websites better. People tend to get their news from blogs and as we all know, most blogs don’t adhere to the standards of journalists. For this reason, publicist Jonathan Hay was able to create the story that his artist Rihanna, was having an affair with Jay-Z to push her single “Pon De Replay”. The rumor made Rihanna a superstar. He also admits that Rihanna nor Jay-Z knew of his plans. Hay is releasing a book titled Publicity Stunt – The Art Of Noise which details how he created the rumor. Here are some excerpts from the book:

Along with one of my partners, I then began to fabricate stories of Rihanna and Jay-Z, leaking false rumors to tabloids, working internet message boards, etc. We started to get an insane amount of media coverage very fast. There are so many things we did that people don’t even know about, not even Rihanna herself. She was completely unknown and I was paid by Vada Nobles to generate publicity. The mega Island Def Jam deal rumor, we fluffed and fabricated. Rihanna and Vada had no idea what I was doing behind the scenes, but my whole agenda was to get media for the song.”

I mean leaking out sensational stories and spreading them around in the news – to tabloids such as the ‘National Enquirer,’ music and gossip sites and whatnot. Like when the rumor surfaced that Jay-Z had a new love life and was cheating on Beyonce…that was just to get attention. Rihanna had nothing to do with any of that, nor did she know what we were doing. I was just trying to break the single and stay employed by Vada Nobles. Even Vada didn’t know half the stuff I was doing. I kept my strategy a secret at the time because, honestly, everyone would have been against it, the tactics that I used. But I was only thinking about the end result – and look what happened…gossip sells.”

I feel awful but, yes, I leaked some of those stories. Looking back, I am ashamed of that; there was zero integrity in that Beyonce & Rihanna maneuver. But this is entertainment and I wanted to obtain publicity – so I came up with some crazy stories and it worked. Rihanna is one of the biggest stars in the world now, and look at how she stormed into the business! Not to take anything from her – she is a great artist – but every artist needs a launching pad and there is nothing better than a good scandal to get the public’s attention.”

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