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PRAS – Public Relations Alternative Society

February 20, 2012 1 comment

Today, President’s Day 2012, the Public Relations Alternative Society (PRAS) has been founded to provide under represented PR professionals with a safe haven for discussions as wild as suggesting a definition for the industry that doesn’t suck.

For reasons why this society has been formed see PR Undefined and PRAS Born. While still a work in progress, here are some ground rules of the PRAS.

  • First, we will not have a president. That is too arrogant for this type of organization.
  • We will not limit membership to America. What’s that about. The world is a small place.
  • We will encourage debate. It’s okay to disagree, but we will do it in a professional manner. No DBs.
  • No dues. Non paying PR professionals have full membership here. If you are in PR (student or professional), you are welcome to be a member of PRAS.
  • And finally, we will discontinue operations immediately if another organization proves capable of meeting the needs of the PR community.

To join, repeat the following:

I (state your name) hereby declare that because no other Public Relations Society in America (or beyond) has proven to accurately represent me, I am a proud member of the Public Relations Alternative Society.

Official membership will also be granted to anyone following on Twitter @PR_Alt.

PR Undefined and PRAS Born

February 18, 2012 5 comments

The public relations industry needs to redefine itself. It has an opportunity to do so, but it is letting that opportunity and the industry’s interest in the project, die due to some combination of arrogance and ignorance.

The failed project won’t be rehashed here. If you are interested in additional background, read Frank Strong‘s take. He is one of the most passionate and articulate folks fighting for a real definition for PR.

During a recent online conversation on the topic, I let my emotions get the best of me. Here is an abridged version of my comment posted at SpinSucks.

There are lots of well thought out and articulate opinions about why, PR should be re-defined, what is wrong with the current process and what should be done next. This isn’t one of those. This is raw emotion from a PR guy that has been in the industry almost 20 years, has had little use for PRSA and now finds himself embarrassed by this entire process.

There are lots and lots of PR people that don’t know this conversation (defining PR) is happening and there are even more that don’t care. I’m now in the don’t care category.

I agree that PR should be redefined. I agree that redefining PR is difficult. I agreed that this is a good and noble cause. But, as of right now, I’m officially out.

No matter the final outcome, I will not get behind any definition the PRSA comes up with.

I don’t need it. I don’t want it and I will not accept it. You don’t speak for me. I only wish I were ever a paying member of PRSA, so I could publicly demand my money back.

Looking back, do I wish I took a moment to calm down and write a more thoughtful comment. NO! Sometimes emotion is called for, but, upon further reflection, I may have been too hard on the PR society. So, I’ve decided it would be best to turn anger into something positive.

Realizing that there are lots of PR people that have no other organized ‘society’ to turn to, I’m launching the PRAS – Public Relations Alternative Society. Full organization charter still to be defined, but if you are a frustrated PR professional looking to join with like minded folks, please feel free to consider yourselves members of the PRAS.

Public Relation Alternative Society on Twitter @PR_Alt

Photo by arztsamui