The PuRest form of PR

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If public relations is the ability to influence attitudes, protests may be the purest form of PR. Throughout history, long-term social change has rarely resulted because of a single leader’s decision; change happened when people raised their voices and pressured leaders to take action.

There are countless events since the beginning of recorded time which serve as examples. From the freeing of Hebrew slaves in Egypt to the rise of Christianity, the Bible tells us of change influenced by great messengers and their followers. Change often starts with a grand gesture designed to attract attention, such as Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses to a church door; Samuel Adams staging the Boston Tea Party; or Rosa Parks refusing to sit in the back of the bus. People power has replaced entire governments through revolution, sometimes for better, often for worse. But change never happens quietly, and it requires that attention be paid.

Protests can take many different forms, but they can never move public opinion without significant publicity. In almost every example communication methods of the day served to tell stories, spread messages and influence people to insist on change. This weekend, the threat of social and political upheaval inspired millions to gather in more than 600 protest marches throughout the world following the inauguration of President Trump. People marched to remind the new president of their concerns and their collective power. The protesters communicated their unity through celebrity spokespeople and massive participation, which in turn got them plenty of media attention.

“We now have a new and untested captain,” wrote former CBS anchor Dan Rather. “His power is immense, but it is…derived, as the saying goes, from the consent of the governed. That means President Trump now works for us–all of us. And if he forgets that, it will be our duty to remind him.”

Those who want to affect change or stop change from occurring can use the power of public relations when they wish to be heard, and hopefully influence, their leaders. The right to do so is truly what makes America great. Your thoughts?

One thought on “The PuRest form of PR

  1. Emil Tansinda

    This week’s post is dedicated to the protests which took place during new president Donald Trump’s inauguration. Many people, across the US have made it clear that they are not in favor of Donald Trump ruling their country, as they do not feel as though he is a reliable or fitting character for the position. There were claims from Georgia democrat John Lewis that he does not feel as though Trump is a “legitimate president” he then also went on to say that he felt the “Russians participated in helping this man get elected and they helped destroy the candidacy.” A real feeling of illegitimacy and illicitness is exhibited from this statement.
    The article goes on to talk about how change occurs, and from the beginning of time change has commenced from a great gesture which attracts the attention of the public. Governments have been ousted, laws have been changed, and decisions have been overruled from people making big statements, taking action and making their opinions heard. The post recognizes protesting as the purest form of public relations as protests used efficiently in situations can have the biggest impact on influencing public opinion The key to the opinions being heard however is publicity. Without publicity, the protests would not be noticed, therefore not influencing anyone as they are not even aware of the opinions.
    More than 600 protest marches throughout the world took place following Trumps inauguration, contrasting greatly to the inauguration of Obama who had a much more peaceful response from the public. If people want change, they have the power to make it happen through public relations and the fact that so many people are using at this specific moment in time speaks volumes.


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