Thursday, August 14, 2008

The PR Industry Reader

Lots of bloggers, professionals and social media activists have come out with articles on the perception of PR this week.

Marshall Kirkpatrick asks whether a good product really needs PR if the company is willing to engage in social media on its own, and both Steve Rubel and Michael Arrington asks if blogging and social media has made the industry obsolete.

As a novice in the industry, I would argue that PR professionals are absolutely necessary. Our sole job is to keep up with industry trends, to connect the right people and to know what changes people's mind. There is no "You can PR too!" boxed kit, and making PR decisions does require insight into communications theory as much as it does knowledge of new media technology.

I think my peers, fellow graduates, are well aware of the changing role of Public Relations. Our professors beat into our brains how adaptable we must become, and questions of ethics and the stereotypes of PR were common topics of discussion. We know the industry is changing, and I think more often than not we are a part of that evolution.

Nicole Jordan at says it better than I can with her discussion about the necessity of re-evaluating the image of PR in "PR's Branding Crisis." Mark Hopkins also builds on this question to answer how PR might evolve. Todd Defren has an excellent summary of the discussion on his blog as well as a video of Mike Volpe on the value of PR.

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