Jahng and Lee

Research in Progress: Navigating the role of public relations in the era of ‘fake news’

July 19, 2018

By Mi Rosie Jahng, Wayne State University and Hyunmin Lee, Drexel University

Public relations practitioners are no strangers to navigating tumultuous media environments and adapting to changes. Yet, the post-factual “fake news world” brings a formidable challenge to the practice and its scholarship.

Scholars have long argued that a keen sense of ethics and recognition of ethical codes are crucial to furthering the professionalism of the practice. Previous research has shown how public relations professionals identify how… More

Justin Walden

PR pros must walk a tightrope with their frontline employees on social media

July 11, 2018

By Justin Walden, North Dakota State University

Frontline employees’ personal social media use can pose numerous behind-the-scenes challenges to public relations professionals and their organizations, according to a Arthur W. Page Center-supported study in Corporate Communications: An International Journal.

Thanks to a Page Center Legacy Scholars grant, I studied how strategic communicators navigate these challenges and how they guide employees’ posts about work on social media.

This project was born out of my interest in… More

Freberg and Kim

Code of conduct guides social media interactions with customers

July 4, 2018

By Karen Freberg, University of Louisville, and Carolyn Kim, Biola University

Social media and public relations go hand-in-hand in many circumstances, but nothing is as strong as the connection it has to organizational public relations (OPR). The ways individuals can engage in dialogue and conversation with brands today are limitless, but for customer inquiries and service options, we mostly see customers use social media to get immediate responses from brands

Social care, or customer service offered through social… More

Jami Fullerton, Alice Kendrick, and Lori Melton McKinnon

Research in Progress: Attitudes and aptitudes in media literacy and ‘fake news’

June 26, 2018

By Jami Fullerton, Oklahoma State University; Alice Kendrick, Southern Methodist University; and Lori Melton McKinnon, Oklahoma State University

Without doubt, we live in a world where information—accurate or not—spreads rapidly. The spread of misinformation is nothing new. However, a convergence of factors in today’s digital society has resulted in a range of challenges involving the origin, dissemination, veracity and effects of many types of messaging. These messages include news, “fake news,” sponsored blog posts and native advertising.

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Hopp et al

Research in Progress: Why do people share fake news on social media?

June 19, 2018

By Toby Hopp, University of Colorado at Boulder

History is full of examples of cynical actors using weaponized false information (or “disinformation”) to achieve political, social and economic ends. So, in a sense, there’s nothing really new about fake news.

And yet, there exists widespread concern about the society-shaping potential of fake news. These anxieties do not feel historic or old or well-worn in character, but instead, fresh, new, and frankly speaking, a bit frightening. 

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Hernando Rojas and Kwansik Mun

Research in Progress: How can we prevent ‘fake news’ consumption?

June 6, 2018

By Hernando Rojas and Kwansik Mun, University of Wisconsin – Madison

The circulation and adoption of “fake news” and misinformation are detrimental to the functioning of any democratic system. In the communication ecosystem of the 20th Century, centralization in the distribution of information, and professional practices by journalists, sought to keep misinformation at bay.

However, in the 21st Century, emerging communication models have decentralized information distribution, accelerated the news cycle, and infused it with strategically placed misinformation… More

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