Event Re-Cap: Ethical PR during a period of “Alternative Facts”


PRSA/SENE Alternative Facts Event Panel

We were proud to kick off our first event of the year with an impressive panel and great attendees! Our conversation dove into the ethics of public communications; credibility; effectiveness; and the sometimes fine line between transparency and legality.

And in between some friendly banter, our moderator and panelists also shared industry best practices for PR/communications professionals and journalists alike. Here were some of our key takeaways:

On Ethics

  • “We are entitled to our own opinions but not our own facts.” – Mike Raia
  • There is a need to balance transparency and legalities. – Laura Meade Kirk
  • Social media should be used by political offices to complement communication channels. – Mike Raia
  • Social media offers an intimate connection to your audience. – Emily Crowell
  • “It’s good that you have more ways to get your message out, but you now have less control.” – Laura Meade Kirk

Best Practice

  • Building relationships between PR professionals and journalists is key to honest and comprehensive reporting. – Panel
  • Press releases are not a place for feature writing. Be efficient, get to the point. – Tim White
  • The old approach to a “Friday News Dump” is no longer an effective practice to avoid sharing bad news. – Emily Crowell

“Thank you” also to our moderator and panelists!

  • Tim White (moderator) – Target 12 Investigative Reporter, WPRI
  • Emily Crowell – Director of Communications, Office of Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza
  • Laura Meade Kirk – Public Information Officer, RI State Police and RI Department of Public Safety
  • Michael Raia – Communications Director, Office of Governor Gina Raimondo