SEVEN CIRCUMSTANCES

Original Book Reviews, Recommendations and Discussions

Code of Professional Standards

Honesty, accuracy, integrity and truth in this website’s content

I am an Associate of the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) 2013 to current, and also:

  • PR Practitioner (CPRP): Public Relations Institute Of Southern Africa (PRISA), South Africa, 2006 – 2011, associated with the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communications Management
  • Accredited Public Relations Practitioner (APR): PRISA, South Africa, 2007 – 2011, reflecting a track record of more than 10 years in the industry and senior standing
  • Member: International Association Of Business Communicators (IABC), Canada, 2013 – current

As a member of the CPRS, I pledge to maintain the spirit and ideals of the following stated Code of Professional Standards, and the associated policies, such as the Social Media Policy. I consider these essential to the practice of public relations. This applies to the contents of this website, and whatever writing I produce for it, and for my clients.  

Code of Professional Standards

  • A member shall practice public relations according to the highest professional standards.
  • Members shall conduct their professional lives in a manner that does not conflict with the public interest and the dignity of the individual, with respect for the rights of the public as contained in the Constitution of Canada and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
  • A member shall deal fairly and honestly with the communications media and the public.
  • Members shall neither propose nor act to improperly influence the communications media, government bodies or the legislative process. Improper influence may include conferring gifts, privileges or benefits to influence decisions
  • A member shall practice the highest standards of honesty, accuracy, integrity and truth, and shall not knowingly disseminate false or misleading information.
  • Members shall not make extravagant claims or unfair comparisons, nor assume credit for ideas and words not their own.
  • Members shall not engage in professional or personal conduct that will bring discredit to themselves, the Society or the practice of public relations.
  • A member shall deal fairly with past or present employers / clients, fellow practitioners and members of other professions.
  • Members shall not intentionally damage another practitioner’s practice or professional reputation. Members shall understand, respect and abide by the ethical codes of other professions with whose members they may work from time to time.
  • Members shall be prepared to disclose the names of their employers or clients for whom public communications are made and refrain from associating themselves with anyone who would not respect such policy.
  • Members shall be prepared to disclose publicly the names of their employers or clients on whose behalf public communications is made. Members shall not associate themselves with anyone claiming to represent one interest, or professing to be independent or unbiased, but who actually serves another or an undisclosed interest.
  • A member shall protect the confidences of present, former and prospective employers / clients.
  • Members shall not use or disclose confidential information obtained from past or present employers / clients without the expressed permission of the employers / clients or an order of a court of law.
  • A member shall not represent conflicting or competing interests without the expressed consent of those concerned, given after a full disclosure of the facts.
  • Members shall not permit personal or other professional interests to conflict with those of an employer / client without fully disclosing such interests to everyone involved.
  • A member shall not guarantee specified results beyond the member’s capacity to achieve.
  • Members shall personally accept no fees, commissions, gifts or any other considerations for professional services from anyone except employers or clients for whom the services were specifically performed.

Other documents:

CPRS Policy Statement Communications in Social Media

I. Interpretation

This policy statement is to be interpreted by members of the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS; the society) in conjunction with the society’s Declaration of Principles (CPRS Regulations, Part II, section 1), the Code of Professional Standards and the society’s Obligations of Membership (CPRS Regulations, Part IV, section 14).

Nothing in this policy statement should be construed as offering or providing legal advice and members should not rely upon it as the sole source of information regarding their legal obligations.

For the purposes of this policy statement, Social media can be defined as online technologies, tools and applications that are used to share information, opinions, expertise, insights and interests using text, images, audio and video in a participatory environment. This would include, but not be limited to: weblogs (blogs), wikis, podcasts, webinars, message boards and forums, social bookmarking websites, social networking websites, and content sharing websites.

II. Application to CPRS members*

This policy applies to all members of the Canadian Public Relations Society at all times, including, but not limited to: The member is acting as an individual; on behalf of an employer or client; on behalf of and/or in conjunction with CPRS and/or any of its task forces or committees; with one or more of CPRS’ local member societies; in conjunction with the Public Relations Society of America or the International Association of Business Communicators; with the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communications Management and/or with any public relations society belonging to the Alliance.

III. Policy Statement on Communications in Social Media

Any communication by any member of the Canadian Public Relations Society in any form of social media will conform to the society’s Code of Professional Standards. Members should have specific regard for the Code’s expectations of honesty, accuracy, integrity and truth. At all times, members should be mindful of the Code’s requirements that: Members shall not engage in professional or personal conduct that will bring discredit to themselves, the Society or the practice of public relations. Additionally, members should familiarise themselves with the society’s Declaration of Principles and Obligations of Membership. In the event that a member’s personal or professional conduct in any form of social media is alleged to be in contravention of this policy statement, the matter will be referred to CPRS for investigation into a potential breach of the Code of Professional Standards. The investigation will be conducted as outlined in the society’s Regulations (Part XII).

IV. Other statutes may apply

Members should also be aware that, as in more traditional areas in the practice of public relations, legal considerations apply to communications in social media. These include, but are not limited to, federal, provincial and territorial Human Rights Codes, as well as laws applicable to defamation, copyright, protection of intellectual property and protection of personal privacy. [*Note: In particular, in Canada, the Competition Act, and codes of good practice set by associated industry self-governing bodies, such as Advertising Standards Canada.]

V. Code of standards for use of CPRS websites

This policy statement applies to any and all materials provided to the national office of the society for posting to any part of the CPRS website as of its date of receipt at an Annual General Meeting of the society; and to any materials currently on the CPRS website as of that date. It also applies to any website maintained by, or on behalf of, a member society of CPRS. It also applies to any social medium hosted, sponsored and/or maintained by, or on behalf of, the national society or any member society.

* Individuals who hold a membership with local CPRS societies will be expected to conform to these standards.

 

 

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