So, we're approaching the end of another eventful - and occasionally scandalous - year.
News headlines have been filled with everything from the leaking of classified intelligence documents and multiple Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong's (partial) admission of drug taking, to New York mayoral hope Anthony Weiner mistakenly sending a lewd text to his Twitter followers and the'fake' sign interpreter at the Nelson Mandela memorial.
Human nature, acts of God or just plain bad luck will mean that, come 2014, there will be a new crop of scandals.
For mere mortals, life continues as usual.
But what - if anything - can be done to prevent or 'manage' a negative story?
Much of the responsibility of pre-empting or handling a crisis falls to public relations and reputation management people (or other related communication consultants) who often have to walk individuals or organisations through how to deal personal attacks, hatred, ridicule and occasional contempt.
It's not a job for the light-hearted.
Once upon a time, it used to be a straightforward process: you'd probably have sent out press releases to 'friendly' journalists, schmooze a few news editors or offer an exclusive interview to the media organisation with the highest audience or circulation.
Of course, I'm simplifying it greatly but, you get the idea!
These days, handling a crisis is like walking a tightrope with a tray of eggs on your heads while dodging bullets.
In essence, it's still 'public' relations, but not as we've known it.
Today's infographic from blogger outreach software provider, Group High illustrates how public relations has evolved with the times and how new methods can be used to communicate messages to the masses.
Thoughts on customer service, communication and, of course, reputation management.