Moving on from technology (internet) and its interaction with human culture and society, the readings of the next few weeks will shed a little light on the relationship between new technology (that is, social media) and public relations (PR).
But before I proceed, it’s essential to state that the argument on whether the relationship between social media and public relations is a union of bliss may never reach a consensus, considering its similarity to the debate between sceptics and celebrants of the internet.
What do other authors have to say, and what are my thoughts regarding the matter of discussion? Let’s discuss…
Social Media: An Effective Tool for Public Relations or Not
Valentini (2014) argued that the perception of social media as totally beneficial to public relations practice was a belief devoid of concrete evidence. According to her, this notion lacked adequate empirical support. Therefore, when she wrote her article, her goal was to point out that social media should not be wholeheartedly adopted into PR practice without a proper understanding of its operations.
Anyone, who has followed the topics previously discussed on this blog, would be able to draw similarities between this researcher’s goal and the conclusions that have so far been made on the use of technology.
In the previous posts on technology, we established that technology has its good and bad sides. It is neither positive nor negative in itself; rather, its use or user determines whether it is categorized as positive or negative.
Likewise, this was the message of Valentini (2014). Her research aimed to enlighten PR professionals that as much as there were many glaring advantages of using social media, it also had its adverse effects that should not be ignored.
I agree that with the way the internet (technology) is being used and controlled today, not just organizations or professionals but also individuals must be cautious when using it.
However, for this analysis on social media and public relations, our focus will be on whether social media is a hundred per cent good for PR practice as acclaimed.
Stay glued to this blog as we delve further into Valentini’s argument in the next few weeks. Please feel free to read up on her article and share your thoughts with us.
By NGOZI ADIGHIBE