I’m hooked on all the news and opinion shows about politics. I’ve noticed several media training tips that politicians seem to use. Could they help you? I hope not!
These answers are probably the least-classy way to respond to media – and they do it all the time.
1. Deny you said it.
2. Say the media misinterpreted your comments.
3. Apologize for the media misinterpreting your comments.
4. Say the other side twisted your comments.
5. Say the other side does the same thing.
6. Say the other side does the same thing even worse.
7. Say the media doesn’t call out the other side for doing the same thing. (The media gave them a free ride.)
8. Blame the media for reporting this. Say it isn’t a story.
9. Change the subject.
A typical response sounds like this:
“I never said that. But if you heard it that way, I’m sorry you didn’t understand what I really meant. They are taking what I said out of context. Besides, they’ve been doing the same thing for years and they do it even more than they admit. I’m surprised you aren’t calling them out for it. Of course, you always give them a free pass because you are aligned with their agenda. I don’t even know why you are reporting on this. It isn’t even a real story. By the way, why aren’t you writing about …”
Doesn’t that sound like a five-year old trying to answer the question, “Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar?” The only thing missing from this rebuttal is, “I’m going to tell Daddy.”
If you want good media relations, don’t listen to politicians.
If you are a politician (or play one on TV), then you’ll want to find out how to do it the right way. Go to this site for expert media training.