In most cases, I would run from anything involving the history of something or something’s “ancient beginnings”, so I had a bit of a preconceived notion about this chapter before I even started reading it. Public relations in the context that I think about it in today’s society seems like something rather new-age, so how much of a history could it really have anyways. I had no idea how far back PR traces into our history.

I found the section on Ivy Lee to be particularly interesting. His beliefs and ideas about public relations have remained extremely and shape modern PR. Almost one-hundred and ten years later, his strategies and ways of thinking have lived on and led the way for what we now know was modern public relations.

I thought the story about him and John D. Rockefeller Jr. was also pretty cool. Lee was hired by Rockefeller to help him following the fallout from the Ludlow massacre which was having an effect on his fuel & iron company. Lee offers him advice that turns out to be extremely valuable to him, and advice that would still be valuable to any organization today. He states, “Tell the truth, because sooner or later the public will find out anyway. And if the public doesn’t like what you are doing, change your policies and bring them into line with what the people want”.  Lee’s advice paid off for John Rockefeller, and his employees began to see him in a new way. Lee’s advice changed the Rockefeller family’s image from a larger-than-life presence, to something very human that people could relate to.

Overall, I think this chapter did a good job of illustrating how PR has grown and evolved over time.

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