Lending Library

Lawyers & Reporters

By Robert L. Rothman

Lending Library Number: 68

While many lawyers have an innate distrust of reporters, situations arise when dealing with the media cannot be avoided. In this new guide, experienced litigators and journalists make a compelling case for why lawyers must overcome their reluctance to respond to or seek out media attention.

The book explains why your client may be more directly affected by news coverage than by the outcome of the lawsuit, and therefore needs you to be effective when interacting with reporters. The guide also describes how media contacts can help you educate the general public about the law or about an important issue that is going unreported.

Litigators who handle high-profile cases will appreciate the guide's wealth of practical advice, but the book will also benefit those who may be surprised to learn a "routine case" has attracted media attention. The authors help you prepare to respond by explaining how news gets reported, and what you can do before, during, and after a crisis to build a working relationship with your media contacts.

Sharing their own experiences, litigators and journalists advise you on how to avoid critical errors when responding to questions or seeking media attention for your client's case. The experts offer you concrete ideas on:

  • Ways to deal with reporters effectively
  • How to appear confident during interviews and news conferences
  • When and how to contact the media with a client's story
  • How to help reporters be fair and accurate in conveying information
  • Important steps to take when representing the unpopular client

The book frankly addresses the public's lack of respect for both professions and explains how lawyers and journalists can work together to regain respect by producing the kind of reporting that benefits your entire community. Ethical guidelines on contacting or responding to the media are clearly spelled out, along with basic rules for discussions on and off the record.

Lawyers and Reporters also includes interview techniques, how-to information, checklists, and key do's and don'ts, making it a valuable asset for your firm's media training program. This is one book you will want to have read before you need it.