Date of Award


Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (Research)


Cork Institute of Technology

First Advisor

Emmett Coffey

Second Advisor

Gearóid Ó Súilleabháin


The public relations industry of today is a much different one to that of a decade ago. The changes that are taking place within the public relations industry are monumental and are not going unnoticed. In recent years the explosion of new media and social networks has led to a distorted media relations landscape. Many academics and public relations professionals have began to focus on the importance of incorporating new media and social networks into their occupation. It appears as though the traditional media landscape is being swept under the rug.

This study aims to challenge the perception that new media and social networks are the most crucial PR tools out there and that the press release is still a vital part of the public relations tradition.

A literature review was carried out to allow the researcher to form observations about the public relations industry.

A qualitative approach was taken in order to carry out research and gather data. The primary data gathering method was interview. Four professionals from the industry were interviewed. The secondary data gathering method which was used was survey. A number of public relations practitioners took part in the survey.

The research findings show that the press release is still a vital element in the public relations industry. Throughout the research process, the researcher also gained knowledge about the fragmented media relations landscape and the impact which it is having on public relations.

It can be concluded from this research that the press release is still significant in the public relations industry. The role of the press release is set to remain a central one in the PR industry for many years to come.

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