Reporters and Parrots

Mar 10th

Google's Peter Norvig recently wrote an article called Reporters and Parrots, which, oddly enough compares reporters to parrots. I think it was partially based off of his recent frustrations expressed in his piece on global warming...which Seth thinks should be renamed to something more like "Atmosphere cancer" or "Pollution death".

Peter's parrot comparison is a bit hard on reporters, but if you know common reporting flaws you may be able to use them as a marketing angle. For example, if you can see a big deal bubbling up early make sure you plaster your lesser known angle or different angle early and often so you can later hear your voice echoed throughout the mainstream media.

After you feed them a few crackers you may be able to feed them other things as well, but you won't have a chance to feed them if you pick the same angle that is already well spoken for with better known experts. Of course reporters can misquote and you really want to be careful with how far you are willing to go to be quoted. Being seen saying the wrong thing to thousands of people might not be the best marketing vehicle unless you are creative and / or have thick skin.

Once you have an in from one story and reporters start trusting you then it becomes easier to get cited over and over again.

Published: March 10, 2006

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