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Questions at press conferences

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by JackInTheBox, Feb 4, 2008.

  1. JackInTheBox

    JackInTheBox Member

    I cover a big college beat in a fairly big city. At most press conferences, the vast majority of the questions are asked by me and one or two other people. Meanwhile, all four TV stations in town are filming, and various fan Web sites and publications are running stories off of these quotes while doing nothing but turning on a tape recorder. The press conferences are even carried live over the school's Web site while the people in charge never ask a question.

    On national football signing day this coming Wednesday, the school is planning to carry the coach's presser live over the Internet...and the whole thing is basically going to be driven by my questions and those of one other writer. Meanwhile, the school promotes its Web site as the official and best source of sports information. ::)

    This is starting to annoy me. The way I see it, why should people be able to log on to the school Web site and watch a press conference driven mostly by my questions? Isn't that sort of an injustice to my newspaper? If no one else in the room has an insightful question to ask, am I justified in being a bit pissed about carrying their water? Am I overreacting?

  2. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    I'm sure you're a regular Helen Thomas or Sam Donaldson.

    It's a press conference. If you have to have quotes that no one else can get, you better do a one-on-one. Can't do that? Boo hoo.
  3. Left_Coast

    Left_Coast Active Member

    Don't ask questions.
  4. Clerk Typist

    Clerk Typist Guest

    This happens more and more. You're right to be annoyed. On Wednesday, see how long you can wait before asking a question in the formal part of the news conference. Or do your thing one-on-one once it breaks up.
  5. JackInTheBox

    JackInTheBox Member

    I've considered that, but I do still have a story to write and bills to pay.
  6. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    It's part of the game. You'll get used it it or at least over it. If not, you should.
  7. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    So you feel the school shouldn't broadcast the presser? Because it infringes on your paper's rights??
  8. JackInTheBox

    JackInTheBox Member

    Exactly. The idea being, media representatives know the subject at hand and ask intelligent questions.
  9. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    Worry about doing your job, not what everyone else is doing.
  10. JackInTheBox

    JackInTheBox Member

    Not at all. I'm saying it renders my story a little stale if the answers to my questions have already been broadcast on the Internet. That's a frustrating experience when no one else in the room seems to have anything insightful to ask.

    And yes, I've been at this a long time and know how it works. It's just starting to get under my skin more than ever. Not sure why.
  11. JackInTheBox

    JackInTheBox Member

    You've missed the point entirely, but thanks for playing.
  12. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    No, your point is just lame and pretentious.
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