This chapter starts off by immediately saying that the internet has dramatically changed how the PR industry deals with media relations — this is a fact we all know to be true.
The chapter continues to explain that the media used to be just a small entity but boy has that changed. Today, the media is heavily driven by a 24 hour cycle of determined reporters who are
“aggressive, opinionated, sharp-elbowed, and more than willing to throw himself or herself personally into the story being covered” (Seitel, Ch. 9).
I entered college wanting to become a journalist and work for a television news station, but ironically this is exactly why I chose not to do so. I’m just not a competitive person by nature, so when I realized how cut throat of a playing field journalism was, I immediately opted out.
When I discovered Communications – PR specifically – I knew it was for me. The chapter points out the difference between a PR professional and a news journalist: Reporters want to get their hands on the story, whether it’s good, bad, or ugly. PR professionals who work for organizations however, want everything to be portrayed from the most positive angle. That’s just my style.
This doesn’t deny the fact that PR professionals will ALWAYS have to deal with the media in some form if they want to be successful in this industry.
The chapter uses the term “Devil’s Advocate” to describe the reason why so many people (myself inculded) are so indimidated by the press. The chapter points out that we often ask ourselves if the media’s intenions are to truely inform the people or to just scare the pants off of people only reporting the bad news.
People who decide to work in PR and Strategic Communications of all forms have a tough job ahead of them. With that said, the chapter presents these important things that I think are great to keep in mind when dealing with the media:
- A reporter is never off duty
- PR professionals’ words are taken seriously by reporters
- Reporters are innocent until “proven guilty”
- Treat journalists professionally
- Don’t sweat the skepticism
- Don’t try to “buy” a journalist
- Become a TRUSTED source
- Never lie
- And last, but definitely not least, READ THE PAPER!!!!!
Image retrieved from Palm Tree Films Ltd. via google
Seitel, Fraser P. “What Is Public Relations, Anyway?” The Practice of Public Relations. 11th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall/Pearson, 2011. Print