Friday, January 20, 2006

Is it a good idea for a source to scoop a reporter on his own story?

Brendon Hodgson posts about an incident where CEO Patrick Byrne posted the email transcript of his interview with Tim Mullaney of Businessweek. Since I have not read the transcript or followed the particulars of this case I cannot comment on the facts. But I have to ask myself if this is a good strategy. What it tells reporters is that if they give you an interview you will not hesitate to scoop them on their own story. It is one thing to publish a transcript immediately after the news story is published, it is quite another to scoop the reporter. It seems to me you have given reporters a powerful incentive to give someone else an interview.

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