Speed really is of the essence
Earlier this week, a commissioning editor on a national newspaper tweeted what she hoped would be helpful advice for anyone keen to pitch a story.
Twitter wasn’t pleased. Some journalists were livid at the stipulation that ideas should be pitched “between 7-8am”, saying it discriminated against disabled people and parents.
Others took offence at the rapid two hour turnaround. As someone who’s worked on both sides of the fence – commissioning and writing – I was amazed by these people’s amazement. How else did they think journalism worked? How would they prefer it to work? Yes, the digital news cycle is superfast, but since we can’t un-invent the internet, we have to feed the beast. Writing early and quickly might not be achievable / desirable for every journalist, and that’s fine: write for magazines, or Tortoise, or any number of outlets that prioritise length and depth over speed.
While this was a conversation aimed at journalists, it was also relevant to PRs. Since some journalists are unaware of the reality of the news cycle, presumably some PRs are, too. In many cases, speed really is of the essence. I can only speak for myself, but the PRs I turn to most are the ones I can trust to supply me with the information I need, when I need it. Even if I need it within a short two hour window.
What Laura Thinks…