Defining Public Relations

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Abstract
The field of Public Relations is comprised of so many different functions, as well as conformable and applicable to a vast array of organizational settings and publics. Public Relations professionals cannot possibly commit to being proficient in all areas of required intellectual capacity, and so specialize according to their intrinsic skills. In the following essay, I will attempt to define Public Relations based on my own interpretation of the assigned reading, as well as other outside sources. I will compare and contrast three published definitions of public relations in an attempt to explain why the field of Public Relations is so difficult to define.

Defining Public Relations

Personal Definition of Public Relations
Public Relations is a general term used to encompass the strategies involved in positively impacting an organization's publics, which reciprocates by positively affecting the growth, maintenance, or support of the organization. The Public Relations field is comprised of multiple specialties, each with their own subsequent intellectually-skilled constituents. The role of the Public Relations professional varies, and is highly dependent upon the establishment he or she represents.

The study of Public Relations cannot be assigned to one particular category due to its complex nature. The study is the art of communication, literature, critical observation, reception, and interpretation; the sciences of psychology, sociology, and anthropology; and the schools of management and mediation, leadership and persuasion, planning and implementation, outcome and reevaluation. The study and practice of Public Relations manifests itself in an ever-changing environment, and so must be adaptable to these changes.

The field of Public Relations requires the concentrated knowledge and skills applicable to each unique organization, including their philosophy, ethics, goals, and publics. Public Relations Professionals act as liaisons,...
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