Democracy’s Next Generation…

To hack or to flack? That is the question I struggled with when I first enrolled in Grady College my junior year. While I knew the PR industry had a bad rap, the “rapidly-changing” (or, perhaps diminishing) world of print media made me hesitant to join the army of notebook-wielding hacks. I chose PR, secretly fearing that the “real” journalism students would turn up their noses at me.

The class lectures on the blogosphere and social media were intimidating at first. The fact that social media was changing everything in the PR industry was scary, but even worse was the constant warning from my professors: employers will expect you to know all of this! I dreaded the chore of learning how to tag, tweet, widget, Wiki and everything in between, but once I started blogging myself and following other people’s blogs, I changed my mind about this whole social media thing.

The future of journalism, PR and Democracy itself (as the words on Grady College’s front door proclaim) isn’t something to be feared; in fact, the newer mass communication strategies are even more fun! Social media adds new voices to the conversation and, in this new realm, even flacks like me are free to be published to their heart’s content. And, hey, if bloggers are now receiving credentials at the Democratic National Convention, they must be on to something.

But social media is still uncharted territory, which means that to truly understand it (and its uses in PR) one must hear from today’s social media pioneers. After all, one false move in today’s world can land a well-intentioned PR pro on The Bad Pitch Blog! I want to meet the professionals whose blogs I have followed, fellow social media beginners and everyone in between. I want to share what I’ve learned with others, using my newly-found tools. And, of course, I really want to be chosen to attend UGA Connect.

UPDATE: I will be one of the 10 students attending UGA Connect on Sept. 19-20! Besides attending the conference, I will be helping out with coverage of the event, through social media outlets of course! Follow me, ChristiePat, on Twitter, or visit the UGA Connect Blog for updates.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] Undergraduates who will help provide social media coverage of the event: Debbie Ebalobo, Jessica Slevin, Mallory Perkins, and Christie Patterson – Christie gets a special shout-out for blogging her application! […]

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