It’s time for a legally defensible certification in public relations

Not accreditation, but certification. Anyone can call himself or herself a PR pro, which is why the industry so badly needs this development, the author says. What do you think?

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Government control of professional standards through licensing is a bad idea for many reasons though, so talk has shifted to certification, which is managed within the profession itself. Generally, certification is required for professions that have very clearly defined and limited ways of doing their jobs.

For example, certified public accountants can balance the books only so many ways without a lot of room for creativity. Communications, conversely, is open to unlimited imaginative and creative approaches.

However, there are communication fundamentals that aren’t so flexible. Adherence to a code of ethics is paramount among them. A communications certification would assure any company or agency hiring a certified communicator, or any journalist or blogger working with one, that the communicator will perform to accepted professional ethical standards.

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