Emotional labour and the pursuit of the personal brand: Public relations practitioners’ use of social media
Public relations practitioners are encouraged to use their feelings and emotions at work, which Yeomans (2007: 218) describes as 'learning to please'. Executing the growing social media aspect of the public relations role can offer practitioners significant pleasure, although due to the industry's desire for transparency in online engagement a practitioner's identity is becoming an increasingly large part of the employer's product and subsequently responsible for aspects of organizational success. Drawing on interviews with public relations practitioners, this article examines the extent to which professional online engagement can be analysed in terms of 'emotional labour' (Hochschild 1983). It explores whether the pleasure that practitioners derive from online work, the freedom it gives them to work remotely and flexibly and the licence it offers to build a personal brand also serves to hide exploitation, legitimize long working hours and reaffirm existing gender roles.
Citation : Bridgen, L. (2011) Emotional labour and the pursuit of the personal brand: Public relations practitioners’ use of social media. Journal of Media Practice, 12 (1), pp. 61-76
ISSN : 1468-2753
Peer Reviewed : Yes
- Leicester Media School