Code of Ethics
From Gnosis Arts
Today, ethics has moved to center stage in many conversations about the industry and practice of public relations. As we trace the development of public relations from the old propaganda model of Edward Bernays; to the press agentry model of P.T. Barnum; down through to today's focus on two-way symmetrical communication; it is understandable that the days of the "Wild West Spin Machine" approach to PR practice has failed our profession as well as our publics. The more conscientious among us have realized, if begrudgingly, that PR is not just about publicity, and that believing so can be damaging to the public trust.
The current generation of PR leaders tends to view the poor reputation in which the PR industry finds itself as largely due to the the absence of a sound ethical foundation for the industry. Therefore, we at Gnosis Arts Media Group want to disclose to our colleagues, customers and publics our ethics for the practice of PR. (For a definition of terms used here, see our PR dictionary.)
Adherence to National and International PR Ethical Standards
The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communications Management (GAPRCM) - representing the U.S. and international public relations communities, respectively - have published code of ethics declarations which Gnosis Arts Media Group adheres to in our practice of PR. These include adherence to values such as honesty; fairness; responsible client advocacy; respect for journalistic ethics; demand for expertise of our staff; as well as freedom of thought, assembly and information. Therefore, a full enumeration of our ethics will not be given here, and we commend the PRSA and GAPRCM statements to your reading. However, we want to highlight a few of the principal ethical guidelines we follow.
Commitment to Truth
Gnosis Arts Media Group strives for the accurate conveyance of truth to all relevant stakeholders and publics with whom we interact. A commitment to truth is not only an essential component of our brand name, but it is also an indispensable element of our ethical conduct. We strive to
- Always tell our clients the truth concerning their PR campaigns - even when to do so may not be received favorably by them
- Always deal truthfully with media, blogging and social media communities, press and staff
- To practice the principles of Open Management within our company as much as is practically possible
Again, knowledge is tantamount to our brand. In fact, that is what "gnosis" means: knowledge. Gnosis Arts Media Group devotes a significant portion of its consulting practice to giving our clients as much knowledge as possible about the best practices in public relations. We do not withhold information, data, analysis or counsel but rather freely give this knowledge to our clients. We want to empower our clients to make the best decisions possible about their own concerns - even if those decisions do not serve an immediate interest to our own company. Imparting knowledge involves
- Refraining from pushing a service
- Educating the client in PR so that they can choose the appropriate service
- Directing the client to another option, even outside our agency, if their needs so suggest
- Disclosing relevant information that the client requests
We see our staff, consultants and contractors as our most valuable assets. We work to treat them with the same understanding, care and respect as our clients and customers. To that end, we commit to
- Providing staff with gracious - not merely standard - compensation for their work
- Providing staff with perks, gifts and benefits to reward them for their work
- Providing staff with professional development opportunities
Serving the Public Good
Gnosis Arts Media Group believes strongly in serving its community. Through our internship program, coordinated through a partnership with Bloomsburg University, we educate the next generation of communications professionals to be productive, knowledgeable and successful members of their companies and communities. In addition, we founded a not-for-profit educational society - the Antifundamentalism Society - as our unique commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility.