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Journalists and PR Professionals to Tackle Economic Survival Issues

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Peter Webley
Journalists and pubic relations professionals throughout the US and Caribbean will converge on Montego Bay, Jamaica, for the first annual Media Makers Unite Conference, November 12-13, 2010, at The Wexford Hotel. The conference, created to foster a better exchange of news between the US and Caribbean, will also explore the increasing role of PR in generating news content.

“This conference will address two important issues - economic survival and enhancing Caribbean news content,” said Trenae Floyd, conference coordinator. “When you look at the populations in major cities from South Florida to New York, many of these communities are heavily populated by Caribbean-born nationals who want to stay abreast of developments in their homelands.”

According to Floyd, workshops will address several issues germane to the media and PR professionals. Workshop titles include: Pooling News Resources to Survive the Economy, Doing More with Less: Incorporating Technology to Fill the Void, Utilizing PR to Pump up Your Content, and Expanding Your Market: Representing Companies Abroad.

“Newspapers throughout the US and around the world are trying to redefine themselves,” said Peter Webley, publisher of Caribbean Today, an international newspaper that serves Canada, the US and Caribbean. “I am hopeful that the Media Makers Unite conference will jumpstart efforts by the print media to finds solutions to economic survival. While we are all competitors in this business, we must still work collectively to carve a new niche to remain profitable.”

Wynona Redmond, president of the National Black Public Relations Society agrees. Having worked in PR for more than 20 years in Chicago, Illinois, she understands the plight of the media. “As PR professionals, our jobs rely heavily on the media, which disseminates our messages worldwide,” said the two-term president. “We’ve seen an influx of journalists who are now practicing public relations because of downsizing or rightsizing within media operations. Their writing and technical skills are an asset to any PR agency and as such, they are able to craft newsworthy content. It is important to note that the PR professional of today brings more to the table.”

In addition to professional journalists and PR practitioners, Mass Communications students will take part in the event. They will have an opportunity to network with news managers and PR agency owners who are in search of interns.

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