Ten Rights and Responsibilities Newsmakers Need to Follow

For immediate release                                  Contact:    Ed Barks
Tuesday, July 15, 2014                                                      (540) 955-0600


Trained spokespeople know what to expect when being interviewed by a reporter. But some are not fully aware of the unofficial standards that exist. A new tip sheet titled “Your Media Rights and Responsibilities” catalogs the procedures that savvy experts and reporters observe.

“Newsmakers need to follow the rules of the media relations road,” said the new resource’s author, Barks Communications President Ed Barks. “When we drive, we need to stick to the speed limit and avoid going the wrong way down one-way streets. Similarly, when participating in interviews with reporters, a set of rules helps our message travel more smoothly.”

Among the rights highlighted in the tip sheet:

  • Know the subject of the interview
  • Set time limits for the Q&A session
  • Ask clarifying questions during the exchange

“It’s important to emphasize that news sources have responsibilities in addition to rights,” he added. Those responsibilities include:

  • Remain honest
  • Respond in a timely manner
  • Maintain a sense of professionalism at all times

Barks adds a word of caution: “Never let your spokespeople enter into a media interview unaware of these rights and responsibilities. Companies that earn victory in the court of public opinion make sure their experts know and abide by these standards.”

“Your Media Rights and Responsibilities” is available as a free download on the Barks Communications web site.

Ed Barks zeroes in on the messages and skills that executives need on a daily basis in order to persuade and inform their publics. They gain sharper verbal and nonverbal talents, more confidence, added opportunities for career advancement, and realization of long-term business goals.The former radio broadcaster is the author of The Truth About Public Speaking: The Three Keys to Great Presentations, and community organizer at The Media Training Blog. As President of Barks Communications since 1997, he has taught more than 4600 business leaders, association executives, and other experts how to succeed when they deal with the media, deliver presentations, and testify before government officials.