Quote, unquote

The New York Times has apparently banned the practice of allowing its sources to check quotes before they’re published http://bit.ly/Q08kvR. Supporters of a free and balanced press will be delighted and, perhaps surprisingly, there’ll be quite a few PR people happy to see the back of this invidious trend.

In media training, reminding the interviewee not to request quote approval is always high on the list of ‘things not to do’. Not only can it offend the interviewing journalist but it devalues the whole process if the interviewee thinks he/she will have a second go at ‘tidying’ up their comments (it also makes for a tedious toing and froing for the PR and the journalist).

Piers Morgan recounts a cautionary tale in his diaries of some quotes arriving back from approval following an interview with erstwhile chatshow celebs Richard and Judy. So annoyed was he that he printed the original quotes together with the amends requested by the couple – making them look ridiculous.

The lesson of course is to prepare properly, get some media training and trust yourself to say it right first time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *