PRSA’s Corbett: PR Definition Should Be ‘Simple and Understandable By Non-PR Pros’

In addition to talking about the PRSA’s opposition to SOPA and PIPA during our conversation late last week, we also spoke with the organization’s chair and CEO, Gerard Corbett, about the progress being made in the #PRDefined campaign.

When last we heard, the results had been pushed back to the end of February. Corbett says they’re hoping to make the announcement the week of the 27th. The commentary about the proposed definitions continues, with some saying the definition should be a combination of what’s been proposed, others suggesting the use of the word “ethics,” and other critiques.

“I think what it says about the art of PR is there’s no single description that will do it justice for everyone that is touched by the business,” said Corbett. But while it may seem that someone somewhere in the world of PR is destined to be unhappy with what comes of this process, Corbett says the goal is to communicate to people outside of the industry.

“If we can come up with a definition that’s simple and intuitive and understandable by non-PR professionals, that’s what you would hope for,” he said. “What we do is so complex and there’s so many moving parts that trying to get the most elegant and simple definition is a challenge.”

Despite the focus on the campaign, the organization has other issues to focus on as well, including diversity (“of people and thinking,” Corbett said), the aforementioned ethics, and creating an understanding at large about PR.

If you have any thoughts about the definition, or the role of PR industry organizations these days? Share them in the comments and we’ll be sure to pass them along.