PR definitions past and present

In the beginning of this course I remember being asked to define public relations, and to be frank I wasn’t so sure. My initial impressions of Public Relations were compiled from different “job shadowing” experiences and word of mouth. I found it hard to really pin point exactly what a PR professional did everyday. It became more and more clear that PR is incredibly difficult profession to define because it is nearly impossible to truly encompass all that the PR profession entails in one sentence. Although the PRSA did come up with definitions the first definition formally adopted in 1982,  “Public relations helps an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.” This definition at the time fit best because public relations main goal is to help organizations reach the public and adapt together. It’s obvious that this simple definition doesn’t contain everything a PR professional would do but it does encompass a main goal of a PR professional. This definition stuck around until a more modern definition in 2012 was reviled. “Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.” This is the definition today and after learning more about PR I could not have complied a better definition. After this course I realize that the profession of PR is very broad and entails a large range of duties. Depending on where and who you work for your job could be completely different. I’ve also learned a bit about solo PR and what it takes to be successful in that realm. I’ve found that in order to be successful it takes a lot of experience and hard work. Overall, As well as the official PR definition changing my personal definition of PR has changed through this course.

 

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