Hello Bloggers and Blogettes!
This week, the question given to us to research was “Extend the concept of citizen journalism to other fields of interest to you by using the prefix of citizen such as “citizen filmmaking,” “citizen games development,” “citizen public relations,” or “citizen advertising.” Obviously, I chose citizen pubic relations, because as I mentioned in my previous blog PR is my chosen profession.
I think that the topic this week is extremely broad with various aspects that could be investigated and analyzed. The term citizen can be defined as the public playing a role in gathering information and news. Which can fit very nicely in front of Public Relations. PR is all about giving the audience what they want and need. So by throwing the word citizen in front of Public Relations it really is a great way to describe how PR has evolved. It now really has the opportunity through an abundance of mediums to use effective tools and in turn give people what they want. An example used by flew in the textbook is “The South Korean OhMyNews site, established in 2000, has as its slogan ‘every citizen is a reporter’, and accesses only 20 percent of the content for its online site from its employed staff, with the balance coming from the estimated 50,000 South Koreans who post news stories onto the site” (Flew, 2008). Although this relates more to citizen journalism, it gives an idea of how people now have a closer and easier connection to the higher power (companies, sporting teams, organisations) and through their interactions can identify to PR agencies what the audiences want.
Ok, have I lost you? I hope not! Let me break it down and make it a little easier. The media plays a massive part in citizen PR, particularly social media. It allows ‘citizens’ or the ‘public’ to throw ideas around, express opinions and overall identify what they want. Giving people what they want is extremely important in PR as being ‘relevant’ is crucial, hence, with the use of social media that is frequently updated it allows people to regularly interact and express which in turn is always relevant. PR is about building a relationship with audiences and publics which is made so much easier through citizen PR.
Citizen PR is forever changing as participation levels increase rapidly. All people are contributing to being social citizens and are making it easier to identify tactics and methods to influence audiences through PR stunts to promote a company. As Gillmor states
“The lines will blur between producers and consumers, changing the role of both in ways we’re only beginning to grasp now. The communication network itself will become a medium for everyone’s voice, not just the few who can afford to buy multimillion-dollar printing presses, launch satellites or win the government’s permission to squat on the public’s airways” Gillmor 2006).
Nowadays, everyone has access to expressing their opinion.
This clip identifies the benefits of social media for PR. As previously mentioned in my first blog, by having access and being able to identify what people want is a massive positive in the Public Relations industry. With people now being able to all give their ideas in different forms, it allows PR practitioners to amalgamate those ideas and cater to the diverse range of publics that a client may be trying to reach. We are living in this newly found participatory culture where people all have the opportunity to have their say as much as the next person. By having citizens involved with PR it changes the whole game. In the past, PR methods had to be broad and unspecific to cater to the range of people targeted. Nowadays, a PR agency can update their Facebook page to cater to the younger generations, send an email to the middle aged people and print a newspaper article for the older generation of people. All of these different forms of media allow PR agencies to promote their client tactfully and through a number of different mediums to give the people what they want.
Overall, citizens have a major impact on the media and the media has a major impact on Public Relations. With people interacting regularly through social media and other engaging forms of media, it helps PR agencies to remain relevant when promoting their clients. What people want is a huge factor for being successful in the Public Relations industry. Luckily, the participatory culture is a major help in identifying what people want and how to give it to them.
Thanks for reading,
Have a tech-riffic day!
Flew, T. (2008). New Media: an introduction, 3rd edition, pg 143. Retrieved March 3 2013.
Gillmor, D. (2006) We the Media- Grassroots Journalism by the People, for the People” retrieved March 3 2013.
Misskatodin. (February 19, 2010) Benefits of Social Media- Public Relations. Retrieved from, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6td3tM8xr-g