Media Training

Document Sample
Media Training Powered By Docstoc
					                     Kathryn Grim
Fermilab Office of Communication
                     July 28, 2009
To increase your understanding of how to
 effectively communicate through the media

By the end of the session, you will:
   Have a general overview of how media works
   Understand the importance of preparing for
    media interactions
   Be able to define key messages, analogies
    and sound bites
   Know what to do before, during and after an
    interview
Media want
 To sell papers/magazines

 To attract listeners/viewers

So stories must
 Appeal to their readers/viewers/listeners

 Be entertaining, interesting, newsworthy
   From remote observatories on the Tibetan
    plateau to a cave in a Shanghai suburb,
    Chinese researchers are poised to conduct an
    audacious once-in-a-century experiment.
    The plan is to test a controversial theory: the
    possibility that gravity drops slightly during a
    total eclipse.
   A team of Yale University researchers has
    discovered a "repulsive" light force that can
    be used to control components on silicon
    microchips, meaning future nanodevices
    could be controlled by light rather than
    electricity.
   IMPACT
   IMMEDIACY
   PROXIMITY
   PROMINENCE
   NOVELTY
   CONFLICT
   EMOTIONS
   Publication process
    ◦   Journalist writes article
    ◦   Editors edit
    ◦   Headline added
    ◦   More editing to fit space
    ◦   Final product is published (or not!)
   You will rarely get to see the product before
    publication
   Need to target story appropriately
    ◦   General-interest newspaper, national TV
    ◦   Local newspaper, radio, TV
    ◦   Documentary
    ◦   Specialized publications
   To be accurate and fair
   To know why your work matters
   Animated, enthusiastic interviewees
   Clear, concise answers
   No jargon
   Analogies, anecdotes
   Sound bites/quotes
   ―[The Standard Model] foresaw four long-range
    force particles—referred to as gauge bosons—
    whereas nature has but one: the photon. The
    other three have a short range, less than about
    10–17 meters, less than 1 percent of the proton’s
    radius. According to Heisenberg’s uncertainty
    principle, this limited range implies that the force
    particles must have a mass approaching 100
    billion electron volts (GeV).‖
   ―The second shortcoming is that the family
    symmetry does not permit masses for the quarks
    and leptons, yet these particles do have mass.‖
   ―[The Standard Model] foresaw four long-range
    force particles—referred to as gauge bosons—
    whereas nature has but one: the photon. The
    other three have a short range, less than about
    10–17 meters, less than 1 percent of the proton’s
    radius. According to Heisenberg’s uncertainty
    principle, this limited range implies that the force
    particles must have a mass approaching 100
    billion electron volts (GeV).‖
   ―The second shortcoming is that the family
    symmetry does not permit masses for the quarks
    and leptons, yet these particles do have mass.‖
   Antimatter is made up of particles with equal but
    opposite characteristics of everyday particles of
    matter.
   Consider this analogy: dig a hole, and make a hill
    with the earth you've excavated. Hole and hill
    have equal but opposite characteristics— the
    volume of the earth in the hill, and that of the
    hole where the earth was removed. For particles,
    properties like electrical charge are opposite to
    their antiparticles—one positive, one negative.
   Also, antimatter will annihilate its matter
    counterpart in a burst of energy, just like the hill
    will fill the hole, leaving neither.
   ―The diameter of an atom ranges from about
    0.1 to 0.5 nanometers.‖
   Atoms are so small 20,000,000 just span a
    pinhead.
   An atom is a million times smaller than the
    thickest human hair.
◦ Develop key messages
◦ Anticipate questions, especially
  the hard ones
◦ Gather statistics, facts
◦ If possible, provide reporter with
  written summary of information
◦ Research journalist and outlet
◦ Ask questions
When developing your key message, consider:
 What’s the one idea you want to convey?
 How do you want to portray yourself, your
  experiment or your institute?
 If the message were repeated, what would
  you want to hear?
 Could anyone interpret this negatively?
 Think of the big picture. Why is this
  important?
   Reporters use direct quotations only when
    they are specific, vivid, descriptive or a way to
    show personality
   1-2 (short) sentences
   Easily remembered
   10 seconds to say
   ―We are trying to prove ourselves wrong as
    quickly as possible, because only in that way
    can we find progress.‖ – Richard Feynman

   ―The important thing is not to stop
    questioning.‖ – Albert Einstein
   Critical for particle physics
   Think them through!
   For example, imagine having four phone
    numbers, including one for a friend, but not
    knowing which number belonged to that friend.
    You would typically have to try two to three
    numbers before you dialed the right one. A
    quantum processor, on the other hand, can find
    the right number in only one try.

   ―Instead of having to place a phone call to one
    number, then another number, you use quantum
    mechanics to speed up the process,‖ Schoelkopf
    said. ―It’s like being able to place one phone call
    that simultaneously tests all four numbers, but
    only goes through to the right one.‖
   What ground are we covering?
   What kind of clip/message are they looking
    for?
   How will it be used? With what other material?
   Will you interview others? Who?
   Live or pre-recorded?
   How long?
   Where and how will it take place?
   Most important information first, background
    second
   Keep responses brief but long enough to help
    reporter find quotes
   Stick to your key messages, repeat points if
    necessary
   Mention your subject by name several times
    during interview
   Don’t overestimate a reporter’s knowledge of
    your subject – if reporter bases questions on
    incorrect information, set the record straight;
    offer background
   Identify facts vs. opinions
   If you do not understand a question, ask for
    clarification
   If you don’t know the answer, say you’ll get back
    to the reporter with the answer; don’t invent
   Don’t argue
   Let them interrupt
   It’s their job to fill the space, not yours
   Make your final point clear and concise; if you
    feel you failed to get the message out, state it at
    the end
   Be enthusiastic!
   Don’t get hooked by negative language
   Always answer in the positive
   Never repeat a negative, even to deny it
   POMPANO BEACH, Fla.– In response to rumors
    circulating the internet on sites such as
    FoxNews.com, FastCompany.com and CNET
    News about a ―flesh eating‖ robot project,
    Cyclone Power Technologies Inc. (Pink
    Sheets:CYPW) and Robotic Technology Inc.
    (RTI) would like to set the record straight:
    This robot is strictly vegetarian.
   Think of them in advance and prepare
   Always come back with a positive message
   Answer the question you want to answer
   Arrive early
   Think of it as a social chat
   Keep it short
   Pause between sentences, speak slowly
   No signposting (first, second, third) or ―as I
    said before‖
   Feel free to ask to try again (pre-recorded)
   On radio, talk with your hands
   Check your appearance.
   Dress quietly. No bold patterns, dangly
    earrings
   Wear summer-weight clothing (lights are hot)
   Avoid tinted lenses
   If someone offers to change your clothes or
    makeup, trust them.
   Sit forward, never lean back.
   Don’t cross or splay legs
   Look at interviewer, not the camera, and use
    normal body language
   If you’re not sure where to look, ask
   If you’re cold-called
    ◦ Say you’re busy and need to call back
    ◦ Determine their subject, deadline
    ◦ Do as much research as you can
   During interview, imagine your supervisor
    standing behind you
 What are you doing?
 Why are you doing this?
 Why should we care?
 What are you looking for?
 What if you don't find it?
 How dangerous is this?
 When will you get results?
 What will be the spin-offs from this?
 Couldn't the money be better spent on a
  cure for cancer?
   Reporters are human tape recorders
   Never say anything you don’t want to see on
    air or in print
   Expect editing
   Make sure they know your title/position, how
    to spell your name
   Ask for a copy of the final product
   Ask for feedback
   Thanks!
   Interviewing is a skill like any other
   Work on your key messages; try them out on
    non-physicists
   Note good analogies, sound bites
   Listen/read about things you don’t know
    anything about. What interests you? What do
    you remember?
   Ask your non-physicist friends/family to
    interview you
   Kathryn Grim
   Fermilab Office of Communication
   kgrim@fnal.gov

				
DOCUMENT INFO