This week I read about an exchange that made me giggle and cringe in span of about six seconds.
PRNewser featured a story that Jim Romenesko uncovered. Evidently, a PR/marketing person emailed Marilyn Young, an editor at the Jacksonville Daily Record to request credit for content in a story that resembled the press release sent by the agency.
According to the screenshot from Young’s Facebook page via PRNewser, the person currently giving our industry a black eye wrote, “But when you publish our work with your name that is plagiarism.”
Let’s just pause right there.
Isn’t providing helpful content and information to journalists at the very core of what we do? I for one get really excited when I see copy lifted directly (or tweaked very slightly) from a pitch or press release in a story. Our job is to get the messaging and language on target. We strive for journalistic style, and if our exact copy makes the cut it means we nailed it. Sometimes the way it’s written is the way it should stay.
PR isn’t an industry for those who want credit for every little line of text they had a hand in placing. I remember being in the grocery store several months after I started dating my boyfriend. He couldn’t grasp why I was so thrilled to see the December issue of Family Circle. I had been waiting six months for a placement that was the result of an in-person briefing with an editor. He immediately asked where my name was on the page. *Head desk* Some people just don’t understand the nature of our industry and that is perfectly acceptable.
But please, if you are playing for our team, learn how to play the game.
tags:Mediabistro, PR, Press Releases, PRNewser, public relations