Obtaining ‘reliable’, ‘credible’, ‘substantiated’ and ‘accurate’ information/ research is important when creating a successful PR campaign. Research is seen to be the beginning of the process that seeks to bring about a specific objective. Research can come in many different forms including organisational material, databases, the internet, content analyses, focus groups, interviews and surveys (Wilcox et al. 2013).
With the internet being such an easy way to access information, this is generally a method that is often used by PR practitioners as you can quickly and easily access information and data about that topic etc. but as easy as it is to access that information it is just as easy to put that information and data online. So how can you decide if that information ‘reliable’, ‘credible’, ‘substantiated’ and ‘accurate’?
Image 1: Quote
Source: Mulroney (2015)
According to Harvard College Writing Program (2015) and University of Wisconsin (2014) to find the most ‘reliable’, ‘credible’, ‘substantiated’ and ‘accurate’ information and data on the internet is by using websites with the authors name/s and qualification/s, the date of when it was published that way you can tell if the resources are up to date, the domain of the website such as .edu and .gov and also the sources on the website such as scholarly articles and books. It is also evident for PR practitioners to stay away from websites such as Wikipedia, personal websites and blogs, as there is a high chance that the information on these websites aren’t always correct.
So if PR practitioners stick to websites with these identification tools on them there is higher chance that the information and data is ‘reliable’, ‘credible’, ‘substantiated’ and ‘accurate’.
Harvard College Writing Program 2015, Evaluating Web Sources, viewed 15 April 2015, http://isites.harvard.edu/icb/icb.do?keyword=k70847&pageid=icb.page346375
Mulroney, D 2015, Life Hack Quotes, viewed 5 May 2015, http://quotes.lifehack.org/quote/dermot-mulroney/what-people-actually-refer-to-as-research/
University of Wisconsin 2014, How can I tell if a website is credible?, viewed 5 May 2015, https://uknowit.uwgb.edu/page.php?id=30276
Wilcox, DL, Cameron, GT, Reber, BH & Shin, JH 2013, Think: Public Relations, Pearson Education, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey.