In a word, trust. It’s the talking point in politics; it’s the biggest issue in IT, mired in spam, phishing, viruses and spyware; and it remains the challenge for PR practitioners.
Who do you trust? What must we do to gain your trust; what must we avoid doing if we’re not to lose it?
It’s 20 years since academics Grunig and Hunt proposed ‘two-way symmetrical’ (ie a dialogue of equals) as the best way to practice public relations. Yet examples of just this remain hard to find: I’ll be looking out for instances in 2005 and reflecting on the role of weblogs in establishing genuine conversations in response to Elizabeth Albrycht’s public challenge.