Sarahgricius's Blog

Life is a succession of moments. To live each one is to succeed.

Welcome to my blog! January 31, 2010

Filed under: Personal — sarahgricius @ 9:07 PM

Hey everyone! I am a junior at Georgia Southern and my major is Public Relations. This is my first blog of many. So I am hoping to improve my skills over the course of this class.

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Week Three: Comments are important

Filed under: PRCA 3330,Topic of the Week — sarahgricius @ 7:50 PM

Comments are a fundamental part of blogs. Public relations writers are usually involved with three kinds of blogs corporate blogs, employee blogs, and third-party blogs. Each type of blogs are important for the same four reasons: 1. to achieve real-time communication with key stakeholders, 2. to enable passionate, knowledgeable people to talk about the organization, its products, and services, 3. to foster conversation among audiences with an affinity for or connection with the organization, and 4. to facilitate more interactive communication and encourage audience feedback. The fourth reason is probably the most essential part of blogging because it deals with the importance of commenting. Without comments, people would lack the communication that is necessary to keep a blog active. Comments can consist of opinions, helpful tips, or even questions. Therefore it is vital to keep up with your blog posts along with commenting on other blogs to order to get feedback.

Some advice that I would offer to others about effectively commenting. Commenting is consider to be somewhat of a “masterpiece of your own.” They can either be brilliant like the masterpieces of Michelangelo or misunderstood like the works of Picasso. I found another great article on Grammar girl titled “How to Write a Great Blog Comment.” In this article they talk about nine simple rules. Rule one is determining your motivation, rule two- provide context, rule three- be respectful, rule four- make a point, rule five- know what your talking about, rule six- make one point per comment, rule seven- keep it short, rule eight- link carefully, and rule nine- proofread. In my opinion my most important rule to remember is to make a point. I do not believe that people would enjoy reading a comment that simply rambles on about nothing to do with the topic of the blog. If you say more in your comment you will make more of a contribution to the conversation. It is important to not just say, “Your so right about all that you just said.” Instead, your comment should say, “I agree with your comment about cats, but why do you think they enjoy catnip so much?” By making comments like that one, you are agreeing with their comment but at the end your are making them engage in the conversation by asking them why.

 

Week Two: Affect versus Effect

Filed under: PRCA 3330,Topic of the Week — sarahgricius @ 7:09 PM
  • What did you learn?

One of my weakest points in writing has always been the issue of whether to use affect with an a or effect with e. The cartoon in the beginning was actually funny and a good mnemonic to remember the difference. The true difference between the words are: for majority of the time you use affect with an a as a verb and effect with an e as a noun. The word affect with an a can either mean “to influence” or “to act in a way that you don’t feel.” Two examples are “The rocks affected Rodney” or “He affected an air of superiority.” As opposed to effect with an e, which can mean a lot of subtle meaning as a noun but at the core of all the definitions “a result” best describes the meaning behind the word. An example is “The sound effects were amazing.” The mnemonic phrase “a very easy noun” will always help me remember that the first letters are the same first letters as “affect verb effect noun.” Also the funny cartoons in the beginning are helpful because in the sentences it says “the arrows affected Aardvark” which is easy to remember that affect with an a goes with the a-words, arrow and Aardvark. In the other sentence “the effect was eye-popping,” it is easy to see that the effect with an e is a noun.

  • What surprised you?

In the article, the author spoke of rare uses of affect and effect that surprised me but after reading I am now aware. For example, affect can be used as a noun when talking about psychology because it means the mood that someone appears to have, “He displayed a sad affect.” Also, the word effect can be used as a verb which is defined as “to bring about” or “to accomplish”. An example would be “Tim hoped to effect the change within the government.”

  • What do you want to know more about?

This article personally helped me to remember when to use affect with an a and effect with an e. After the first couple of paragraphs were done, I thought that I would be set but after reading the rare cases I became a little confused. Therefore, I would of liked to have more examples provided for me in those rare cases. I believe the website will help with many more complications I may have when writing and found it to be useful.

 

Week One: Social Media

Filed under: PRCA 3330,Topic of the Week — sarahgricius @ 6:34 PM

The only social media I have been part of is facebook. Right now I still have my facebook account and check it religiously. I would conclude that if someone wanted to get in touch with me, facebook would be the place to contact me instead of my e-mail address. I became part of the network around 5 to 6 years ago when the concept first came out. I chose to join this particular network because it is a safe environment for young adults to interact and there is a high level of privacy as opposed to myspace.

I have not created a twitter account yet because I honestly do not believe that people are that interested in my life, that they would actually follow my on twitter to see what I am doing. In my opinion, I view twitter as a celebrity status network and facebook as an “average” persons’ network. I am quite intrigued by this system of blogging and am now considering on making an account outside of the class.

Although, I did panic when I first saw all the options that are provided for you. But just like any new piece of technology, you have to play around with it and once you are comfortable then it becomes instinct for you. Since I know that blogging, twitter, and facebook are great ways to get the word out about events; I now realize that it is important to create all these social networks for my career. My next step in networking is to create a twitter, so if anyone wants to explain to me how to create one that would be great!

 

Chapter 2 Reading Notes

Filed under: PRCA 3330,Reading Notes — sarahgricius @ 6:07 PM

After reading the first paragraph in chapter two which explained the history of persuasion; I realized that this class is much like my Introduction to Human Communication class. Aristotle was the first to set down the ideas of ethos, logos, and pathos. In short, ethos is your personal credibility and character, pathos is an appeal to emotion and sympathy from the audience, and logos depends on the logic of the argument.

  • The four basic elements of communication consist of the sender, message, channel, receiver. In public relations, “it is extremely important to always think of publics in the plural sense instead of as a collective entity called ‘the general public.’” (page 36)
  • “People will not believe a message, or act on it, if it is contrary to their predispositions. This is the crux of Leon Festinger’s theory of cognitive dissonance.” (page 38) Dissonance can be created in at least three ways. First the writer needs to make the public aware that circumstances have changed. Second, the writer needs to provide information about new developments. And finally, the writer should use a quote from a respected person that the public trusts.
  • There are a number of factors to persuade your target audience. To name just a few; audience analysis, appeal to self-interest, clarity of message, timing and content, etc. I feel the number one factor in persuasive writing is source credibility. “A message is more believable to an audience if the source has credibility, which is why writers try to attribute information and quotes to people who are perceived as experts.” (page 43) The three elements of expertise is credibility, sincerity, and charisma.
 

Chapter 1 Reading Notes

Filed under: PRCA 3330,Reading Notes — sarahgricius @ 6:04 PM

The first sentence of the book explains the framework of public relations writing perfectly “the primary focus of this book is on one aspect of public relations practice- the writing and distribution of message in a variety of formats and media channels.” (page 1) Just think about all the news releases we see and promotional advertisements we hear daily, which makes the quote above correct.

  • Writing is only one component of public relations and the four other core components are: research, planning, communication, and evaluation. PR writing is part of the communication component, which occurs after research has been conducted and extensive planning to formulate the goals and objectives of a campaign have taken place.
  • I  found the article named “tips for success”  interesting and helpful. The article says writing is one of five skills and Fraser Seitel offers four other basic skills that are necessary for success in public relations. The knowledge of public relations, knowledge of current events, knowledge of business, and the knowledge of management.
  • I also found the section under preparation for writing called computers as interesting. I am considering purchasing a new computer soon and found the statistics and opinions to be useful. From all the information given, I think that an apple computer will suit my needs because, “apple machines are faster, better, and far less prone to malicious software than Microsoft’s Vista operating system.” (page 7)