Are the PRCA and CIPR now at war?

So the PRCA has announced that it is going to offer an individual membership category. Various other mags have done a great job of copying and pasting the PRCA press release so I won’t attempt to compete on that score, but if you haven’t read the full story here it is.  I do find it tough to get passionate about trade organisation membership. Nothing against either the PRCA or the CIPR, they are both organisations run by very nice people, but I do wonder whether in the midst of this war between the two organisations, anyone has stopped to consider:  What is the purpose of a trade organisation in PR today? I meet a lot of PR people in my job and I have to say it’s rare (well actually never) that any PRO has sat me down and talked about their need and passion for a PR trade association. So I say good luck to the CIPR and the PRCA, you seem to be on a collision course, and that means, probably, that there will be a winner and loser. But I would just take a bit of time to consider what the role of a PR trade association needs to be, especially in these austere times in which we live. I would suggest offering value for money and being a flag bearer for industry standards should be set high on your agendas. But if all you appear to do is charge people a membership fee and then offer them expensive conference tickets and training, then I’d argue the PR profession might turn its back on both of you …