PR has become the fifth estate, said journalist, author and
filmmaker John Pilger at the Communication Directors’ Forum last
According to Pilger, as journalism in the Western democracies has become
emasculated, practising self-censorship under an increasingly
monopolised media ownership structure, PR has gained influence.
He said: ’In many ways New Labour is a creation of the Murdoch press -
we now have government by media and the spin doctors have celebrity
He added that in the UK, with many national journalists now ensconced in
the ivory tower of Canary Wharf, PR is not only providing fodder for
filler articles, but ’the high powered PROs do most of the journalists’
thinking for them’.
’I think PR has become the fifth estate, usurping much of the
journalist’s work,’ he said.