pub·​lic·​i·​ty | \ (ˌ)pə-ˈbli-sə-tē How to pronounce publicity (audio) , -ˈbli-stē\

Definition of publicity

1 : the quality or state of being public
2a : an act or device designed to attract public interest specifically : information with news value issued as a means of gaining public attention or support
b : the dissemination of information or promotional material
c : paid advertising
d : public attention or acclaim

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Synonyms for publicity


ballyhoo, hype, puffery

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Examples of publicity in a Sentence

His public appearances are good publicity for the new movie. An arrest for drunk driving is bad publicity for any celebrity. The film has gotten some good publicity. She has received a lot of publicity for her latest novel. The studio spent a lot of money on publicity for the movie.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Many companies are sending gifts to the newlyweds in hopes of getting publicity for their brands, but that ain't going to happen. Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Received $9 Million in Wedding Gifts and Returned All of Them," 31 May 2018 Oren Segal, director of the ADL's Center on Extremism, said the groups view the fliers, posters, stickers and banners as effective tools for generating publicity and stirring up outrage. Michael Kunzelman,, "U.S. colleges see sharp rise in white supremacist propaganda: data," 28 June 2018 Bella Pollack, Stamford, $32 Million A low-key woman who lived on a quiet, residential street on one acre in North Stamford and did not generate publicity throughout her life. Courant Staff Report,, "$49M Estate Tops List Of Connecticut's 10 Largest Named Estates In 2016," 21 June 2018 To generate publicity, the cash is handed out at ceremonies held in the weekly roadside markets where villagers gather to barter meager fish hauls for goods like plastic buckets or quart bottles of gasoline. New York Times, "Nearly Eradicated in Humans, the Guinea Worm Finds New Victims: Dogs," 18 June 2018 While Markle's mother, Doria Ragland, is attending the nuptials, some other members of her family are conspicuously absent but are nonetheless generating their own publicity. Corynne Cirilli, Town & Country, "Everything We Know About Meghan Markle's Family," 19 May 2018 For all the effort companies are exerting to make changes within the office, many are fearful lest word leak to the outside world and generate any good or bad publicity, according to human-resources consultants., "Trump Orders Commerce Department to Consider Probe on Auto Imports," 8 Mar. 2018 Miscavige, famously known as the publicity-shy Chairman of the Board of the Religious Technology Center, seldom gives interviews. Karen Mizoguchi,, "Scientology's David Miscavige Makes Rare On-Camera Appearance as the Church Launches TV Network," 14 Mar. 2018 And that’s because, in reality, their formation and subsequent appearance was a publicity stunt dreamed up by the singer’s then-manager Les Conn. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Watch a 17-Year-Old David Bowie Give a Rare Interview on Long Hair and Gender," 8 Jan. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'publicity.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of publicity

1609, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for publicity

Last Updated

18 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for publicity

The first known use of publicity was in 1609

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More Definitions for publicity



English Language Learners Definition of publicity

: something that attracts the attention of the public
: attention that is given to someone or something by newspapers, magazines, television news programs, etc.
: the activity or business of getting people to give attention to someone or something


pub·​lic·​i·​ty | \ ˌpə-ˈbli-sə-tē How to pronounce publicity (audio) \

Kids Definition of publicity

1 : attention that is given to someone or something by the media
2 : something that attracts the interest of the public His appearance on TV was good publicity.

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Comments on publicity

What made you want to look up publicity? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


an enemy or opponent

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