CO 350: Contemporary Perspectives in Public Relations: Blog Post 10: Ethics International

Melbourne mandate


p. 3 What is “listening” all about. Speculate: what might this have to do with ethics?

Answer:In the Melbourne mandate, the idea of listening talks about the purpose of a public relations practitioner within a relationship with a client or client organization to pursue critical information that can be passed along to public interest.  The information gathered from this “listening” relationship can be applied within strategies and tactics of the organization by the practitioner.  The term “listening” lightens the mood of the relationship between the client and organization to show that the relationship is more relaxed and personable than a professional relationship.  In these standard you almost get the feel of the culture of Australia in being a laid back culture, using certain terms such as “listening” to bring locality to these standards.  


pp. 4-5 What is “responsibility,” and what does it have to do with ethics?

Answer: According to the Melbourne mandate, the idea of “responsibility” is the duty a public relations professional/practitioner has to its publics, its organization, and to professional and personal self.  In dealing with the publics, a public relations professional has the duty of making sure there is a balance with the organization’s needs and society’s interests in the products, services and information being presented from the organization.  The balance between these two bodies is essential for good ethics because you want to the organization to be fair in handling and giving information to different publics. In the idea of organizational responsibility, the practitioner must help the organization in dealing with decisions and having the constant communication through different strategies with the stakeholders of the organization; letting internal and external people of the organization know how to abide by ethical standards of public relations is important to the success of the organization. In the professional responsibility, a professional/practitioner must abide by professional ethical codes, explain these to the external and internal stakeholders of the organization for mutual understanding and continuing to digest new knowledge of the public relations profession. In personal responsibility, a professional/practitioner must be accountable in the decision making process, and evaluate outside of there personal values any decisions made by the organization.  In other words, to make things ethical, a person must put aside personal values and assume professional values of the organization.  


p. 2 & appendix: Discuss: what are the elements of “organizational character,” and what do those have to do with ethics?

Answer: According to the Melbourne mandate, there is a chart that explains how the “DNA” of an organization is made up of three “strands”: values, leadership, and culture. Values are used by the organization as a foundation to guide critical decisions and ethical behavior.  In other words, a companies values are the first priority in an organization because they are rooted deep into the well-being of the organization.  Values can be used in two ways where the external stakeholders almost “check” the organization, or the organization sends out information to look for feedback.  Leadership involves the idea of leaders in the company taking in those values and operating the organization through those values, making the best ethical decisions for the organization. The third element, culture, takes in the rest of the elements, but it also is the influence on the other elements, which includes structures, processes, ways of working and collective behavior with internal and external stakeholders.  These three key elements determine the ethical standards, and drive the ethical standards of the organization.  



Codes of ethics

Global alliance

compare with PRSA: values; similar? different?

Answer: There are a lot of similarities between the PRSA code of ethics and the Global Alliance Code of Ethics.  The first value in the Code of Professional standards is the same value found in the PRSA’s list of values. The difference between the Global Alliance and the PRSA is the PRSA’s addressing of the public interest.  In the advocacy part of the Global Alliance, there exists no mention of public interest, or at least the words ‘public interest’.  The second half of the PRSA Code of Ethics’ statement of values and the second half of the advocacy statement is word for word following the Global Alliance Code of Ethics.  The “honesty” section in each of the codes of ethics is similar in the first part, but PRSA goes in the direction of the “public” while the Global Alliance follows clients and employers. Loyalty is another common value shared by both the PRSA and Global Alliance, and almost mean the same thing.  The differences lie in the values of independence and integrity.  The PRSA independence value talks about the actions and how public relations professionals should take account for their actions. The Global Alliance code of ethics talks about integrity talks about how personal reputations are protected.  These are the differences and similarities between the PRSA and Global Alliance codes of ethics.


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