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Week 1 - Reflective Response to Reading

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Week 1 - Reflective Response to Reading

  1. 1. Student no: s13161812 Reflective Response to Reading – Week 1 MED4105 1 | P a g e Gemma Harris The author’s key argument in week one’s reading is that there is too close a relationship between PR professionals and journalists resulting in colonisation of PR professionals. This results in ‘PR-isation’ and ‘churnalism’ of news stories, negatively impacting on the journalism industry influencing lack of respect for them, via the public, due to poor scrutiny. I understood this point least as it challenges common sense by delving deeper into why news stories are not always accurate. Convergence of PR and journalism and colonisation of PR is due to a variety of factors changing. This is evident by the theory of Davis “These organisational, technological, professional, cultural and market changes in the news and PR industries have tilted the balance of power in favour of the latter” (Moloney and Jackson et al., 2013, p. 268). This concept conveys the subject under discussion by implying why this problem of PR superiority exists. Two other important theories are ‘PR-isation’ defined by Moloney as “the professional state where PR attitudes are incorporated into journalism’s mindset” and ‘churnalism’ defined by Davies where “forms of pre-packaged material are ‘churned out’ by journalists” (Moloney and Jackson et al., 2013, p. 261-262). It supports the subject under discussion by identifying the issue’s and that PR is influencing journalism too heavily. A real example of ‘PR-isation’ is through the use of the internet; the development of technology is a factor increasing ‘PR-isation’. The case study states “Fox News’ public relations staffers used an elaborate series of dummy accounts to fill the comments sections of critical blog posts with pro-Fox arguments” (Posts, 2013). This implies current technology is influencing news stories with false information impacting negatively for journalists but successfully for PR.
  2. 2. Student no: s13161812 Reflective Response to Reading – Week 1 MED4105 2 | P a g e Gemma Harris Further investigation could be “How can technology be changed to prevent ‘PR-isation’ of journalism?” Another reading discusses this “More separation comes by the PR media system developing its internet presence and so messaging directly to its publics , avoiding media transformation of its material” (Moloney, 2006). A suitable methodology would be semiotics as it can consider if communication through visual signs and symbols, within new media, are influencing this issue. This reading helped me understand the subject under discussion by providing me with an insight into how too close a relationship between PR and journalism can have a negative impact on Journalism and create a shift of power towards PR professionals. The new knowledge I gained from this is that there should be an ‘ethical distance’ between the two industries and aspiring journalists should be cautious, independent and aware of the differing communication strategies, with journalism including less infotainment and being more factual and PR being favourable.
  3. 3. Student no: s13161812 Reflective Response to Reading – Week 1 MED4105 3 | P a g e Gemma Harris Bibliography: Moloney, K., Jackson, D. and Mcqueen, D. 2013. News journalism and public relations: a dangerous relationship. CJCR: Centre for Journalism & Communication Research, Bournemouth University, p. 261-262. Moloney, K. 2006. Rethinking public relations. London: Routledge. Posts, F. 2013. Fox News Reportedly Used Fake Commenter Accounts To Rebut Critical Blog Posts. [online] Available at: http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/10/20/fox-news- reportedly-used-fake-commenter-account/196509 [Accessed: 2 Feb 2014].

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