For other uses, see Public (disambiguation).
"General public" redirects here. For the band, see General Public.
"General audience" redirects here. For formal meeting, see Audience (meeting).
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The diverse public is symbolized in this sculpture, "La Foule Illumine".
In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This is a different concept to the sociological concept of the Öffentlichkeit or public sphere. The concept of a public has also been defined in political science, psychology, marketing, and advertising. In public relations and communication science, it is one of the more ambiguous concepts in the field. Although it has definitions in the theory of the field that have been formulated from the early 20th century onwards, and suffered more recent years from being blurred, as a result of conflation of the idea of a public with the notions of audience, market segment, community, constituency, and stakeholder.