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Tips for interacting with the Media — What to do when the news is good and when it’s not


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Wednesday, Oct. 24 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at WestfordCAT studios, 487 Groton Road, Westford

TO REGISTER: email jcrane@westfordcat.org.

WestfordCAT News Director Joyce Pellino Crane is offering a presentation for residents on “Tips for interacting with the Media — What to do when the news is good and when it’s not.” This hour-long talk will tell you how to conduct yourself when a reporter calls, what “off the record” and “on background” means,  and why some intriguing stories never get written. There will be a question and answer period and the opportunity to speak with the presenter after the program ends.

Here are some real-life scenarios:

You’ve accepted the chairmanship of a town committee and suddenly find yourself embroiled in a local controversy with a reporter calling for a comment. Now what? Can you just ignore the calls?

You’re chairing a fundraising event and would like the local newspaper to cover it. Why doesn’t the reporter show up and what can you do to get some publicity?

You’re in the know about some potentially explosive information and you want to get out the word. You call a reporter to tell her what you know only to be met with resistance. Why won’t the reporter cover the story?

What will be covered in this course?

*Why it’s not a good idea to ignore a request for comment

*What to say or not say to a reporter

*How to turn a controversy into a non-controversy

*How to control the story

*How to be transparent and why it matters

Who’s it for?

This presentation is for event organizers, fundraisers, board and committee members, librarians, developers, educators, health care providers and business owners. It’s designed to give insight into how reporters approach a story and why they choose one topic over another. It will help you understand the reporter’s obligations and what you can do to help shape the story.

Bring your questions and comments for a frank and open discussion.

Presenter: Joyce Pellino Crane, Multimedia News Director at WestfordCAT

Joyce Pellino Crane’s bio:

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Local journalism is vital to our communities. As other publications shift focus toward regional journalism, WestfordCAT continues to provide high-quality hyperlocal reporting to our town, free for everyone to read. So  we have a small favor to ask. Every contribution, no matter how big or small, helps us sustain our journalism and keep our community informed. Please consider supporting WestfordCAT by donating online.