Greetings dear friends. We'd like to start the year off right and take a minute for a good cause. Ya know, we work hard here at Strumpette. We bear the burden of cynicism happily as we are filled with, and motivated by, a tremendous sense of responsibility. But that said, every so often, especially after the lull of the Holidays, the glow subsides. It's during these times we are reacquainted with our own humanity. Some of us here even speak openly of altruism.
No, I'm not talkin' about Doc's "relationship" stuff or how Scoble and others cheaply leverage their own personal needs to pretend to help "friendz." No, we're simply talking about that time right after New Years when all the drugs and alcohol have worn off and one is left with flayed nerves and the teeth-gnashing sense of soul-crushing individual guilt. I'm talkin' about the overwhelming awareness that it weren't for our inheritance and the world of other unearned privileges that make our lives an existential nightmare... we'd be just like "them." It is in that spirit that we ask ourselves, "What can we do?"
Well, here's an opportunity. This comes to us by way of our friend Jack O'Dwyer:
In the three years up to June 30, '07, 391 new PRS APRs were created. That's a scant 130 a year (less than two percent of those eligible i.e. any PRS member can take the test). Note: They even dropped the “five years of experience” rule. Someone right out of college could take and pass the test and be APR.
Unfortunately, hardly anyone is putting up $385 for the test plus $25 application fee.
Friends... won't you help the PRSA staff today? By picking up that phone and calling in your pledge, you help feed any one of the following people: William Murray, Donna Jonas, Heather Ritchey, Philip T. Bonaventura, Wai Cheung, Linda Yu, Yurizan Reyes, Marlene Montes, Barbara Ross, Amy Epstein, Bobby Harvin, Alex Ortiz, Richard Dookhi, Jason Hunt, William Bobick, John D. Robinson, Richard Spector, Lisa Franklin, Jennifer Ian, Eileen Lintao, Malia Moore, Jackie Gonsalves, Michelle Jackson, Inez Smith, Agatha Wickham, Judy Fong, Marlene Aquino, Barbara McDonald, Colleen Seaver, Kathy Mulvihill, Christina Darnowski, Randi Mason, Alison Calvello, Don Bill, James Abel, Carolyn Marr, Denise Mojica, Livi Osborne, John Elsasser, Lenore Oliveri, Leah Elison, Sharon Terry, Alison Stateman, Susan Yip, Janet Troy, Joseph DeRupo, Diane Gomez, Glenore Hibbert, Karla Voth, John Bomier, and Judy Voss, APR.
Remember, for every APR that's created, God rings a little bell somewhere and the baby Jesus gets a puppy.
I've been in PR for over 10 years now, owned a mid-sized PR agency, had over 40 employees and have always shunned this APR effort.
PR is about thinking quickly, being in tune with your audience and guiding the client to the promise land. It's not a profession, where someone's life is on the line like a doctor. Every time I saw APR on the resume, I'd immediately think - oh no, they want too much money and will take anything the client says personally.
I wonder if you feel the same about IPRA and other likely industry associations not mentioned here so far. I wonder if there's any PR association in the world that helps its members significantly in return for their contribution. In fact, is there such a body in any other 'creative' industry? What with all the scandals surrounding award ceremonies...