Communication, ch. 7

What is communication?

Well Websters dictionary defines it as:

1. The activity of communicating.

2. Something that is communicated between people or groups.

3. A connection allowing access between persons or places.


It is also the third step in the public relations process. It may also be referred to as “execution,” and is known as the most visible part of public relations work.


The main process of communication is the goal of getting a message across from an encoder to a decoder. There must be a source which is also known as the sender/encoder. The sender sends the message that travels through a channel to a receiver. The receiver then decodes the message. The fifth element in the proccess can be feedback from the reciever to the sender. (There has to be a shared experience.)


The most effective two-way communication envolves two people having a face-to-face conversation. The reason that face-to-face is so important is because you are then able to see gestures, facial expressions, intimacy between conversation, hear the tone of voice each other uses, and be able to receive instand feedback. The bigger a group gets the harder it is to communicate with each other. This has become a problem in mass media.


Two Types of Audiences:

  1. Active: The people are already at the interest stage. They are seeking out more information. An example of an active audience would be one who is about to purchase something and finds it attractive, basically already sold on that product. The person will ask for more information about the product in detail. They might also read in-depth articles concerning the product before purchase, or perhaps talk to someone who knows something about the product.
  2. Passive: The people who pay attention to the message only because it offers a type of entertainment. They can be made aware of the message through brief encounters. They like to use communication channels that can be utilized while they are doing not much else. An example of this type of audience would be an announcement they heard on the radio on the way to church.

 Wilcox, D.L., & Cameron, G.T. (2009). Public relations: Strategies and tactics (9th Ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

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Filed under Class Notes Overview, PRCA 2330

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