Video News Releases

Video news releases (VNRs) are audio/video public relations and marketing tools generally designed to attract news outlets to cover the VNR-promoted product, service, or firm. The simple formula is that one makes favorable coverage of a client more likely if one makes that coverage easier by providing all the materials necessary for a newsroom to cobble together the story. Broadcast use of VNRs has U.S. federal regulators asking questions, and taking action in extreme cases, about whether VNRs violate sponsorship identification rules. This entry discusses the distribution of VNRs, how they are used, research on VNRs, and ethical concerns about their use.

VNRs started in the 1980s as three-quarter-inch videotapes mailed to local television newsrooms. Even these early versions had the basic elements of VNRs: suggested ...

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