We PR professionals live in difficult times. We depend heavily on language to create the desired imagery, messages, and stories that we painstakingly present to the public. When words lose their meanings, we lose much of our power.

On that note, it’s a shame what the phrase “reality television” has done to the term “reality.” For people who love words, this is a travesty. Not only has the meaning of “reality” been diluted by cultural erosion; it’s been completely eviscerated—to the point where it’s used ironically. For real.

But the government is mounting a defense–with the public good in mind. New Jersey Assemblyman Ronald Dancer has introduced legislation that would allow communities to fight back against the invasion of reality shows like “Jersey Shore” that consume public resources while inviting drunken chaos. Though the laws target specific undesirable behaviors and actions, we all can see the bigger public relations picture here: No one wants their hometown forever associated with a bunch of idiots.

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