Maintaining the Boundaries: The Interpretative Repertoires Journalists Use to Differentiate Themselves from the Public Relations Industry

Chantal Francoeur


Journalists make use of a number of interpretative repertoires to describe their relationship to the PR industry. Among these : they tap into the institutional discourses of both their own field and that of their PR counterparts ; they dip in and out of the deontological code of the journalistic profession ; they exploit a repertoire that we refer to here as «realist» discourse. That journalists can touch upon a range of repertoires within a single sentence points to the complexities that lie at the heart of this relationship. It also speaks to the way that journalists manage to distinguish themselves from PR professionals while at the same time, collaborating with them. These are among the findings to emerge from interviews conducted with twenty journalists working the daily beat in Montreal.


Journalism ; Public relations ; Interpretative repertoires ; Journalistic professionalism

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