Monday Readings: Chapter 3 and 12

There is so much manipulating and scheming in our society so I thought it was refreshing to hear that honesty and transparency is important to an industry like public relations. Chapter 3 also mentions the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). It was very informative about all the programs, seminars, and course they offer at PRSA. It is nice to know that the public relations community in America comes together to form this program to help each other develop the industry even better each year. I have heard of PRSSA and am aware of its chapter at Seattle University, but I was not aware that the program also included so many different things to help students net work and find internships to help develop their career. I hope to join the organization when I get the chance to and start stepping into the world of public relations, networking with executives and get more insight on what it is like to work at a firm. There are other organizations like the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) and International Public Relations Association (IPRA) that is mainly focused on the international aspect of public relations. I think it is good that there are so many good organizations out there to help students step their foot into developing their career. The second half of the chapter focuses on the study of public relations and it mentions how continuing your education is important in this industry because it is always growing and changing.

Public relations, ethics, and the law all tie in together. It is important to keep your ethics and morals when practicing public relations because there are many details that tie into the industry. Lawsuits can be held when a company uses a picture of someone without their permission. There can also be situations where someone is held responsible because he is a coconspirator. This occurs when this person participates in an illegal action, counsels and guides the policy behind an illegal action, takes a major personal part in an illegal action and etc. There are also situations when an organization is held responsible for libel because they released made a  false accusation or statement or injures someone’s image. For this reason, it is important to watch the language being said and released in the public’s eye because a suit can be filed if the statement is false. In the public relations review article, it is suggested that, “Opinion statements be accompanied by the facts on which the opinions are based, statements of opinions be clearly labeled as such, and the context of the language surrounding the expression of opinion be reviewed for possible legal implications.” It is also important to remember what kind of information employees should and should not provide due to the right of privacy. Other issues regarding this topic includes the copyright of artwork, photography, and writing. It is important to give credit to the rightful owner of that work otherwise legal actions might take place as well. The same goes for trademarks. It is estimated that 90 percent of American corporations are dealing with lawsuits at any given time. Because there are so many grey areas and details to watch out for, it is essential to be extremely careful of what you say and release to the public at any given time.

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