Vendor for Rhode Island's Iceland video wasn't 1st choice

AP News
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Posted: May 05, 2016 12:33 PM

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Documents show that the company that made a Rhode Island tourism video that included footage in Iceland was selected in March based on advice from a state employee who had worked for that company weeks prior.

The public relations firm running Rhode Island's tourism campaign was overruled after it recommended the that the state economic development agency hire a different company to make the video. The documents were released to The Associated Press following a public records request.

The video was quickly pulled in March after being mocked for showing footage of a Reykjavik concert hall.

A Providence-based video production service, IndieWhip, made the video.

The state Commerce Corporation's art director says he recommended IndieWhip because of the company's qualifications, not because he used to work there.