ASSIGNMENT #1: “Ethics in Public Relations”
Given the Ethical Guidelines of the Public Relation Society of America described on www.prsa.org, research an example of an unethical public relations tactic in a credible news source, then, write a 2- page essay in MLA format describing how that tactic violates a specific PRSA guideline.
1. Read Chapters 1-2 of the Lattimore text, paying special attention to the importance of ethical behavior in the profession of public relations.
2. Next,visithttp://www.prsa.org/AboutPRSA/EthicsandreviewtheEthicalGuidelinesofthe Public Relation Society of America.
3. Research an ethical issue in public relations. You must use a credible news source, such as a PR trade publication (PR Week, PRonline) or the media section of a major news outlet, such as the New York Times, Boston Globe, Wall Street Journal.
4. What PRSA ethical issues are concerned in this example? Summarize your example and provide justification for why you believe an ethical guideline was violated.
5. As a PR professional, how would you have handled the situation or campaign differently?
Important: All assignments must be typed, proofed, cited and follow MLA Guidelines, included a Works Cited. Essays must be min. 2 pages, 1 1/2 line spacing, 1” margins.
All assignments must be saved in Word or PDF format, and submitted via ULearn.
ASSIGNMENT #1: “Ethics in Public Relations”
Ethical Guidelines of the Public Relation Society of America, found at
http://www.prsa.org/AboutPRSA/Ethics, (also available in Chapter 4 of the Lattimore text.)
Building Principles on Core Values
The Code, created and maintained by the PRSA Board of Ethics and Professional Standards (BEPS), sets out principles and guidelines built on core values. Fundamental values like advocacy, honesty, loyalty, professional development and objectivity structure ethical practice and interaction with clients and the public.
Translating values into principles of ethical practice, the Code advises professionals to:
? Protect and advance the free flow of accurate and truthful information.
? Foster informed decision making through open communication.
? Protect confidential and private information.
? Promote healthy and fair competition among professionals.
? Avoid conflicts of interest.
? Work to strengthen the public’s trust in the profession.
Code guidelines, like tactics supporting strategies, zero in on putting value and principles into play for working professionals facing everyday tasks and challenges. Among them, professionals should:
? Be honest and accurate in all communications.
? Reveal sponsors for represented causes and interests.
? Act in the best interest of clients or employers.
? Disclose financial interests in a client’s organization.
? Safeguard the confidences and privacy rights of clients and employees.
? Follow ethical hiring practices to respect free and open competition.
? Avoid conflicts between personal and professional interests.
? Decline representation of clients requiring actions contrary to the Code.
? Accurately define what public relations activities can accomplish.
? Report all ethical violations to the appropriate authority.
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