Ch. 3–Avoiding Legal Hassles Wednesday, Feb 17 2010 

Chapter three covers everything from photo releases, copyrighting, infringement, and everything in between. A couple of sections in the reading that I found most interesting were:

1. On the first page of the chapter where it gives samples of government regulatory agency cases and lawsuits that had to do with PR and PR practitioners. Some of these cases seemed to have good merit, while others seemed to be a little ridiculous. I find it a bit strange that a company would use “the claim that its chicken didn’t contain antibiotics believed to cause drug resistance in humans” as its selling point, but to each his own (…I guess.)

2. In the section about libel and defamation I got a little confused. I had to read it a couple of times to completely understand the difference between the two.  In the text it says, “according to the AP Stylebook, ‘libel is injury to reputation. Words, pictures, cartoons that expose a person to public hatred, shame, disgrace, or ridicule, or induce an ill opinion of a person are libelous.” But then it goes on to say that “printed falsehood” is known as libel and slander is “oral communication.” OK? Well, then it continues with “today courts use the term defamation as a collective term.” I get the whole collective term thing, but so do we not use libel and slander anymore? Confusing if you ask me.

3. Another section I found interesting was the misappropriation of personality. I thought this was an interesting section because it has to do with people and their likenesses no matter if they’re dead or alive.

Overall, I think chapter 3 might be the most interesting chapter we’ve read up to this point. Hope everyone is having a great semester so far! 🙂

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Ch. 2–Becoming a Persuasive Writer Tuesday, Feb 2 2010 

Chapter two is all about persuasion. It tells you the basics of communication: sender, message, channel, receiver. Here are a couple of points in the chapter that I found interesting and will be useful in future writing:

1. Hierarchy of Needs. Abraham H. Maslow created a list of human needs ranging from basic survival to more complex. They are: physiological needs (food, water, clothes–basic essentials), safety needs (protection from danger, death or restriction), social needs (the feeling of being accepted as you are by others), ego needs (self-esteem, confidence, respect of others), and self-actualization needs (after all other needs have been taken care of one decides to do something for fun or just because.) I feel like I’ve learned about Maslow in at least one class every semester, but I don’t get tired of studying his work. I bet he was a very interesting guy…or really weird. Either way, he seems to have been a pretty smart.

2. Content and Structure. This section includes drama, statistics, surveys, examples, testimonials, endorsements, and emotional appeals. I think these techniques are great! Just like the book says, “people are motivated by theatrics and a good story.” If these techniques are used properly there is no way that a reader wouldn’t be persuaded to use a product or change their opinion of a person. The next time I have to write a persuasive article or paper I’m definitely using these seven techniques.

3, Persuasive Speaking. Even as a little girl my dad has told me that I’m one of the best salespeople he knows, and he knows A LOT of them since he is in sales himself. He’s always said that I ” could sell sand to Arabs” and after reading page 54 I think I could definitely give it a try. I’m not a shy person, but when I have to speak in front of people I don’t really know I get nervous. This section gave a few good techniques that would help with public speaking and persuasion. The book says to offer a choice, try to achieve partial commitment, and ask for more even though you know you’ll get less. I think these points are a good outline for anyone trying to gain new clients or make old ones happy.

~Megan

Ch. 1–Getting Organized for Writing Tuesday, Feb 2 2010 

Sorry I’m just now getting to post my thoughts on the readings. I’ve been super busy with school, going home for doctor’s appointments, and all that jazz. Moving along…

A few things that I found interesting in chapter one were:

1. The section on computers. It might sound silly to some people, but I was blown away by all of the different types of computers, word processing packages, and the different amount of GB one can purchase. I have a laptop, but I couldn’t tell you how many GB of memory or anything it has. After reading that section it was clear to me that I need to do some more research on high tech gagets before I purchase them.

2. I really liked the section on Professional Publications. As a member of PRSSA I receive PRSA Public Relations Tactics as well as PRSSA Forum. I love reading the articles in these publications and seeing what professional in the PR field are doing as well as what PR students are up to.

3. A section that I think most people need to remember was “How to Improve Your Writing.” I know I’m guilty of making mistakes in my writing, but this section on page 24 had a few helpful tips from an article by Katie Badeusz (www.Ragan.com) on how to clean up and spice up your writing. Katie says to “be clear, avoid jargon, include quotes, and allow yourself to write crap…” along with a few other pieces of advice to improve your writing.

These are just a few points that caught my attention in chapter one.

~Megan