The interesting part of this announcement is that the layoffs are geared toward realigning resources toward new technologies.
“…We're moving from being a magazine publishing company to a multiplatform media company, and we have to reallocate our assets. The people you need, the investments you need to make, are different if you're going to be building Web sites and making TV shows and doing wireless deals and events and partnerships,” said Dawn Bridges, a spokeswoman.
I am not sure how things will turn out for Time, but I am convinced that they at least are accurately reading the challenge.
Media companies that realize they are in the business of communicating news and information, no matter the format, will be the real winners over the next few years. So goes it for those of us in public relations.
My favorite definition of public relations was adopted in 1978 by the First world Assembly of Public Relations Associations:
Public relations practice is the art and science of analyzing trends, predicting their consequences, counseling organization leaders and implementing planned programs of action which…serve both the organization’s and the public’s interest.
Or as Edward Bernays said, “It’s a two-way street in which leadership and the public find integration with each other and in which goals are predicated on a coincidence of public and private interest.”
So distilled, I see public relations as the business of effectively communicating with the public.
Those who realize that this is (and always has been) the real business of public relations, and not the tactics or specialties that we practice, will thrive in any new model of communication that might arise.