Sunday, 31 May 2009

Don't fight it...

executive editor
Mark Hanson
has an
interesting little piece
on LabourList about the fact that Labour have started inviting bloggers to their lobby and press briefings. Now granted ConservativeHome have had a presence at pretty much every political speech or event TB has been to, this is, however, a bigger step in embracing the fact that new meeja is actually where it's at.

"There have been ripples of curiosity in the blogosphere about the decision by Labour’s press team to include bloggers in the daily briefings being given to journalists in advance of the Euro elections.

Jack Straw did one on crime and constitutional affairs on Wednesday with Ed Balls on Children, Schools and Families the following day.

I went along to the Straw session, held at 39 Victoria Street and this is how it went:
It was billed at 10:45 for 11am start but Straw was late, keeping everyone waiting in the holding room for about twenty minutes!

He then did a 5 minute summary of the choice facing the electorate on law and order. We’d all been handed an A4 document beforehand with Labour’s achievements on crime down one side and the Tories shortcomings on the other and his talk was a summary of that.

Unlike on the West Wing or at the PM’s monthly press conference, it isn’t a free-for-all in terms of asking questions. Basically Labour’s press team have a list of attendees and each one is called out and offered the chance to ask one question plus one follow up. I couldn’t work out what order people journalists were asked.

There were about 20 press from the lobby/home affairs beat, so that meant 40 questions about law and order… no, about 6 questions about crime and the rest about MPs expenses.

Without wanting to sound like a complete geek and waffle on about blogging and bloggers own self importance, TB would just like to say that the Tories really need to up their game and get involved in this sort of thing. Without the slow process of cutting down trees, making paper, printing on said paper and then driving these bits of paper around the country, bloggers can get a story out in seconds. Surly this is something that any party media machine needs to realise and whether they like it or not, should attempt to embrace. In other words... any chance of a lobby pass?

Oh go on... TB promises he will be good.


Anonymous said...

No, no, no, we want our bloggers to be independant. Supportive at times, critical at others. Getting into party measage mode would make all blogs the same.

Labourlist is the perfect example. They cut your comment if they don't agree with it, even if it is a sound and clean arguement. It really is just propaganda and so very tame. Stay true to your roots TB.


Bloggers can be independent whilst maintaining good contacts. can only help them to be well informed and have decent access.

but yeah rumbled:

TB only wants access to that subsidised lobby bar and the researchers.

Guido Fawkes

I see the ConHom guys at Tory press conferences. I sometimes go to Lobby briefings. What is the news?

Labour are being disingenuous, they refuse to put me on their press release distribution - unlike the LibDems and Tories.

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