Before you decide whether this is a bad idea from a PR perspective, give it a read.
Reaction I've seen online so far has been mixed; notably, the Huffington Post considers it evidence that he is "struggling with his celebrity status;" the blog "Comfort me with Offal," written by James Beard Foundation Award for Humor winner, Ruth Bourdain, calls it "a bit douchey."
Is it bad for Brown's PR?
The answer to that depends on Brown's audiences, and how much they expect a cooking show host to give up reasonable courtesies the rest of us are entitled to.
It could also depend on how they react to the Fanifesto's smart-alecky tone, as my Mum would call it, but that's consistent with his television persona. A bit smart-alecky, but in a friendly way. If they like him on TV, I'm thinking its tone shouldn't be a problem.
Should it be bad for Brown's PR?
I really don't think so... but of course, I'm not necessarily the target audience. We'll have to watch what happens.
There's a temptation to assume every move a client makes that will disappoint some corner of the audience base means "bad PR." But realistically, everything you do is likely to annoy somebody. It's impossible to only do things that are universally accepted and appreciated.
Any move you make could cause someone to grouch, and might even get some unflattering media attention. But that only really matters in the long run if it's going to harm your reputation/relationship with a significant portion of the target audience.
What do you think of Alton Brown's Fanifesto? Reasonable, or "a bit douchey?" And do you think it will negatively affect his image? Comments are open!