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Four Basic Communication Strategies, Beyond the Borders of Traditional Public Relations Practice
Unformatted Document Text:  13 of the facts. A famous metaphor is “theory is story”, introduced by feminist researchers (Denzin & Lincoln, 2000:927). Denzin & Lincoln consider metaphor as “the backbone of social science writing.” The problem with qualitative inquiry is that the normal social science writing format does not reveal enough of the wealth of acquired data. That is why the essay format is used. Overt statements as well as small details are deconstructed into comparative statements, according to their type. They are then combined in an essayistic picture (Eliaeson, 2002:47), following the style of the “realist tale” (Daymon & Holloway, 2002:138) by providing a “play of metaphors”(Alvesson & Sköldberg, 2000:191) and making parallel readings (cf. Morgan, 1986). Although the profession is becoming increasingly dominated by women, the authors of the professional literature are almost all men. That is why, in the typology, ‘he’ and ‘him’ are used instead of ‘she’ and ‘her’. The seven types, constructed from communication theory and public relations literature, are presented below. The town crier: public relations is broadcasting his master’s voice The view of communication as a magic bullet, in combination with a focus on the denotative side of meaning, characterizes the “town crier” type. When describing the core business of their job, town criers employ a jargon typified by catchwords such as factuality, honesty, clarity, correctness, punctuality, reliability and creativity. In their opinion, communication is action, it’s what they do, nothing more or less. Their job is to broadcast their master’s voice. The town crier is the type of communication manager whose public announcements all concern things that have been decided elsewhere. He takes care of presenting the announcement according to professional standards within a given timeframe, and to distribute it to all concerned. No priority is given to questions about the effects of his activities, as he is convinced that research is unnecessary. The town crier seems to think that he has “a special insight into certain publics and how to control them”(Pavlik, 1987:18). Segmentation of target groups is no problem either, since the town crier has a list in his computer of groups or individuals that he wants to reach. If no list is available, then he will use the mass media as pipelines to his predicted “publics”. His profession is the act of emission in

Authors: Van Ruler, A. A. Betteke.
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of the facts. A famous metaphor is “theory is story”, introduced by feminist researchers (Denzin &
Lincoln, 2000:927). Denzin & Lincoln consider metaphor as “the backbone of social science writing.”
The problem with qualitative inquiry is that the normal social science writing format does not reveal
enough of the wealth of acquired data. That is why the essay format is used. Overt statements as well
as small details are deconstructed into comparative statements, according to their type. They are then
combined in an essayistic picture (Eliaeson, 2002:47), following the style of the “realist tale”
(Daymon & Holloway, 2002:138) by providing a “play of metaphors”(Alvesson & Sköldberg,
2000:191) and making parallel readings (cf. Morgan, 1986). Although the profession is becoming
increasingly dominated by women, the authors of the professional literature are almost all men. That is
why, in the typology, ‘he’ and ‘him’ are used instead of ‘she’ and ‘her’.
The seven types, constructed from communication theory and public relations literature, are presented
below.
The town crier: public relations is broadcasting his master’s voice
The view of communication as a magic bullet, in combination with a focus on the denotative side of
meaning, characterizes the “town crier” type. When describing the core business of their job, town
criers employ a jargon typified by catchwords such as factuality, honesty, clarity, correctness,
punctuality, reliability and creativity. In their opinion, communication is action, it’s what they do,
nothing more or less. Their job is to broadcast their master’s voice.
The town crier is the type of communication manager whose public announcements all concern things
that have been decided elsewhere. He takes care of presenting the announcement according to
professional standards within a given timeframe, and to distribute it to all concerned. No priority is
given to questions about the effects of his activities, as he is convinced that research is unnecessary.
The town crier seems to think that he has “a special insight into certain publics and how to control
them”(Pavlik, 1987:18). Segmentation of target groups is no problem either, since the town crier has a
list in his computer of groups or individuals that he wants to reach. If no list is available, then he will
use the mass media as pipelines to his predicted “publics”. His profession is the act of emission in


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