Friday, May 19, 2006
(page from the media training manual we were given)
Media training was fun and actually more instructive than I would have expected. I wish I'd had it when I wanted to write an op-ed about Medicare Part D this fall and didn't know what to do. Apparently, as part of this fellowship, we can consult with this media company anytime during it or two years hence. So now, I just need a Health Policy Message and fame awaits.
If you are not so lucky to be able to have professional media training, the chief point about being interviewed for radio or television could be stated thusly: The interviewer's job is to ask questions. Your job is not to answer those questions. Your job is to convey the message that is the reason you agreed to do the interview in the first place. I mean, the impression I was left with was that you should think of your message as being like a pointy stick, and your goal is to impale the interviewer with it. (While making eye contact and avoiding jargon, of course.)
A strange turn to the day was that one of the people started asking about blogs, and noted to the trainers that I have a blog. This led to various questions, including the two obvious ones for which I have yet to devise effective talking points: "What do you blog about?" and "Why?"