Public relations

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Public relations (or euphemistically, spin) is the art of making the unacceptable and obnoxious into a fragrant and desirable thing. It can also be described as a refutation of the old saying "you can't polish a turd."[1]

While the term originates in the business world, it is often argued that most of politics and monarchy these days is pure public relations. Noted masters include Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, and almost any other President of the United States (Jimmy Carter being a possible exception to this rule).

As mentioned above a division of PR is spin. The UK Tony Blair government was a prime example of spinning out of control.

Politicians don't lie any more, they just engage in public relations. And they don't change policies any more; they just "spin" them to look more acceptable.

There are two main objectives of PR: Promotion and Damage Limitation.

  • Promotion is in effect advertising; whether of a product, person or organisation. A hitherto unknown person can become famous (and possibly wealthy) purely through the intervention of a PR firm.
  • Damage limitation is most often seen when a "celebrity" is caught out in some misdemeanor. The PR firm will then spin the reporting of the event or circumstance to place their client in a less bad, or even positive, light

Countries such as Saudi Arabia are now paying public relations firms millions to improve their image in the United States.

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