Title page for ETD etd-05052003-142102

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Reynolds, Katie Elizabeth
Author's Email Address kareynol@vt.edu
URN etd-05052003-142102
Title Public Relations and Community Support: Assessing Fortune 500 Web Sites
Degree Master of Arts
Department Communication Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Tedesco, John C. Committee Chair
Collier, James H. Committee Member
Holloway, Rachel L. Committee Member
  • Public Relations
  • Web Sites
  • Community Support
  • Fortune 500
  • Community Relations
Date of Defense 2003-04-21
Availability unrestricted
This content analysis examined presence of 47 public relations community support variables on a systematic random sample of 166 Fortune 500 corporate web pages. Three hypotheses and two research questions guided the analysis. Hypotheses predicted (1) the increased implementation of community support gateway links on corporate web sites since 2000, (2) that corporate industry type influences the Web presence of community support, and (3) that corporate rank influences the Web presence of community support. Research questions analyzed one-way and two-way tool presence as well as community support presence at local, national, and global community levels. Results supported corporate rank as an indicator of community support on corporate web pages; however, results did not support corporate industry as an indicator of community support or the increase of community support presence on corporate web sites. Analysis includes discussion regarding reasons for lack of community support and two-way communication tool presence on corporate web sites. The thesis concludes with recommendations for implementation of two-way public relations community support tools in order to facilitate mutual understanding, trust, and dialogue between a corporation and its local, national, and global communities.

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