Archive for January, 2012


Avoiding Legal Hassles

Since studying public relations, I’ve considered attending law school. Anyone who knows me would probably start laughing after reading that, but PR and law go hand-in-hand. I could easily write a statement that could lead me to a costly lawsuit if I didn’t understand the legalities behind it.

 

I have also considered cosmetology for those in need of a little TLC

 

I have since crossed law school off of my bucket list, but that does not mean I can float right by the jurisprudence boat and remain in calm waters. Let’s be “honest” here…

Flip on the news any given day and you’ll see politicians, lobbyists, athletes, and CEO’s deteriorate their name for what ever reason. Let’s talk Enron. Their major execs, including their director of investment relations, were thrown in prison for fabricating their company earnings on public media. Those jerks made the company completely collapse and cost thousands of people their money and jobs.

 

 

NBC sure made an uproar when General Motors (GM) filed a multimillion-dollar defamation suit against them after Dateline carried a story on their program about GM’s gas tanks exploding on their pickup trucks in side-impact collisions. It turns out the explosions were actually caused by the producers rigging the trucks with toy rocket “ignitors.” NBC ended up airing a 9-minute apology and also paid GM $2 million to reimburse the costs of its legwork. Nice going, NBC!

Even with all the ruckus the producers of NBC put us through, I will forever be reminded of Chris Hanson’s To Catch a Predator on Dateline. I mark my calendar when they list marathon dates.

 

Persuasion

I am a strong believer in the accuracy of source credibility. Wilcox mentions Steve Jobs and his passion for Apple Inc. He says, “In countless news articles and speeches, he also comes across as a personable, laid-back, ‘geek’ who really believes that the MacBook, iMac, and the iPhone are the best products on the market.” I, being a part of the “dark side” of Apple and a die-hard fan of Steve Jobs agree with Wilcox’s statements. The credibility of Jobs is what makes Apple successful. Rest in peace, my friend.

Close to 14 million people have viewed Jobs' commencement speech at Stanford University on YouTube. No really, I just checked.

I am intrigued by today’s level of semantics. I relate this type of appeal to certain stereotypes that society holds. Semantics play a large role in politics by differentiating Democrats from Republicans. One may be “pro-choice,” but an avid “pro-lifer” may call this person “pro-abortion”. The issue is a matter of how you frame it.

The controversy over political correctness will always have different connotations with different people.

*All of the posts in this category will be my thoughts based on the book “Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques” by Dennis L. Wilcox.

Maybe it’s just me, but when I began studying public relations 3 years ago I had no idea how much my writing skills were a factor in my success. Luckily, I was born with what my father kindly puts, “a colorful mind.” I can use my creativity to set myself apart from others. Creative writing and unique style is essential to public relations.

 

"Countless client surveys and interviews with PR employers confirm that good writing is at the top of their list of expectations" -Wilcox

 

Wilcox talks about how vital AP style is to form proper technique and delivery. This is something that I will continue to practice until I master it.

It is no surprise that the media has drastically changed over the years. Google, Yahoo!, and MSN are vital to my research. Not only can I find credible information in seconds, but I have access to full-text articles and information I would not be able to find otherwise.

 

Google is the most widely used search engine.

 

With tools such as search engines, I have the ability to do extensive research for my clients. In a crisis situation, all I would have to do is pull up saved background information and research new data. Research is 25% of the public relations process. Without the Internet, I would not be able to cater to my clients as effectively.