What Is Propaganda?

Paul L. Harrison, of the Department of Journalism, University of Kansas, wrote a letter to William Randolph Hearst, asked a question:

"How do you distinguish between legitimate publicity and propaganda?"

Mr. Hearst, in the columns of his New York American, answered:

" 'Legitimate publicity' is the spreading of truthful information, or facts, about any cause or condition which is of interest or importance to people generally, and not for the pecuniary or other advantage of the person spreading it.

"Propaganda is the giving out (or hiring of) opinions, arguments, or pleas to induce people generally...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!