Editor to PR people: We’re not publicists!

Lately, says American Lawyer editor-in-chief Kim Kleman, “it’s as if some PR folks don’t understand that the job of a reporter is different from that of a publicist. … Here’s a cheat sheet so they’ll know exactly where The American Lawyer stands.” From that sheet:


* We don’t let anyone see stories before they’re published, and PR staff doesn’t get to “approve” the quotes we plan to use. …To fact-check pieces, reporters will sometimes review with a subject the gist of his or her comments. And occasionally, for very complicated pieces, I encourage reporters to read word-for-word specific passages to experts to make sure we got the details right.
* If we didn’t make a mistake, we’re not going to change a published piece so you like it better.
* News judgment is our call. Sometimes, we’ve gotten requests to kill a story when a PR person thinks an article is heading the wrong way. This doesn’t work.

Meanwhile, PR man and former newspaper journalist Gil Rudawsky lists some misconceptions that reporters have about PR people, including:

* PR is just spin.
* PR pros couldn’t make it as journalists.
* No stress.
* There are no deadlines in PR; and
* PR people don’t know how to write.

The best PR people, says the former Rocky Mountain News journalist, “know how to pitch good stories, and work with reporters to get them information and sources on deadline. This is even true in cases when a story might be negative toward a client.”

* Dear PR Professional… (americanlawyer.com) | If you hit a paywall, try the link in the tweet above
* What I learned from both journalism and PR (bizjournals.com)