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Posts Tagged ‘Katie Couric’

Jill Abramson Talks to Katie Couric About What Went Wrong at The New York Times

In one of her first post-firing video interviews, deposed New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson spoke with Yahoo!’s Global News Anchor Katie Couric about what went wrong with her career at The Grey Lady.

On the “fired for being a woman” narrative:

“I don’t see gender as being…the whole explanation, by any means, of what happened, but it’s somewhat irksome to me to see so much focus on the issue of why was I fired.”

And yet…

“I think that women are scrutinized and criticized in a somewhat different way, and that certain qualities that are seen in men as being the qualities of a leader … are somehow not seen in as attractive a light when a woman is involved.”

Here’s our favorite line:

“How many people in the real world really care why Jill Abramson lost her job?”

We would say quite a few, actually. Couric didn’t ask Abramson how the NYT could have handled the firing better on the PR front, but someone could certainly write a book…

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Bloggers Unimpressed by Yahoo’s New Tech Site for ‘Normals,’ AKA Idiots

Oh look, it’s former NYT techie and current Yahoo Hater of Buzzwords David Pogue making fun of tech blogs’ names and calling out their writers’ headlines as prime offenders in the “meaningless jargon” category. Are you shocked to learn that they weren’t too impressed with his presentation yesterday?

Marissa Mayer clearly wants to reinvent Yahoo as a tech news company for the average browser, what with the elaborate roll-out and the middle-of-the-road Katie Couric appointment, but so far the established tech world is dubious.

Let’s check out Pogue’s introductory Yahoo Tech post to see what this is all about.

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Katie Couric Scores Manti Te’o Interview (They Share a Publicist, BTW)

Katie Couric Manti Te'o InterviewSo Manti Te’o, who most Americans believe to be a big old liar, visited Katie Couric‘s office for his first official post-scandal interview, set to air tomorrow. While we’re interested in the fact that he admitted to “briefly” lying about the fake dead girlfriend hoax for six weeks after learning that he’d been duped (yeah right), we’d like to examine the “Inside PR” aspects of the story.

We love Katie and all, but no one would call her a sports journalist–and we don’t feel like the scandal is quite big enough to justify a trip to Oprah-land (though the Te’o family apparently considered Oprah and Dr. Phil before settling for Couric). So how did she score this top interview? Well, the fact that the two parties share a publicist certainly didn’t hurt. That’s right–Matthew Hiltzik of Hiltzik Strategies (MediaBeat interview after the jump) now performs crisis comms/damage control duties for both Couric and Te’o, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Te’o chose Couric over both Oprah and ESPN.

Is this standard operating procedure? Or does it raise even more questions about the players involved in this sordid tale?

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Media Training Tips and Cautionary Tales

In the high-risk, high-reward world of media training, major stumbles during television interviews are seared indefinitely in the public’s memory. Nailing an interview is not so easy, even for well-known public figures and corporate executives.

Media relies on basic principles and varied techniques. Today we’re focusing on seven tips–and what can happen when interviewees ignore them. As noted below, not everyone is as well-versed in handling the media as Joe Torre, (left) a former Major League Baseball manager.

Preparation is key since winging it is never a good idea. Interviewees need to wrap their heads around not only the core topics, but also the show, the interviewer and his or her questioning style. An example of what not to do? Herman Cain appeared completely clueless when asked about Libya during a video interview in Milwaukee last November, leaving several seconds of awkward, empty air time.

Keep answers brief, limited to quick sound bites. While Vice President Joe Biden is well known for his rambling remarks, the communicator in chief may need to heed this tip as well: During NYU’s Hospitality Investment Conference in June, NBC’s Chuck Todd predicted that President Obama may not win the first debate this fall, because [almost] no one has cut his remarks short during his term in office–and debates have strict time limits.

Beware softball questions. “What newspapers and magazines do you read?” is not a technically difficult question. Still, it was enough to trip up Sarah Palin during her now-infamous interview with Katie Couric during the 2008 Presidential election that was later parodied on SNL.

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Off the Beaten Path with CNN’s Soledad O’Brien

“There’s a tremendous niche in telling stories that fly under the radar,” Soledad O’Brien told the audience at the Paley Center for Media in New York last Thursday. O’Brien, anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point, shared these and other insights based on her reporting career and growing up in a mixed race family.

O’Brien said she left NBC’s Weekend Today show to go to CNN to be “knee-deep in breaking news stories. It was like going to college in terms of learning the craft.” She said she’s pleased to be known as a tough interviewer, and she has modeled her interviewing approach after Katie Couric. “Katie’s style is also conversational, polite and friendly,” O’Brien noted.

The anchor said her upbringing “shaped her as an outsider, which was a challenge at times.” But from that experience she also learned “your bosses don’t have to love you, and you can still succeed if your work is good. It’s not a popularity contest,” she added.

Working on documentaries has helped O’Brien make her mark in journalism, and she has focused on various demographic groups, including blacks, Hispanics and Muslims. In each case she tells what it’s like living in America from their standpoint.

As O’Brien explained, “the stories that interested me were the ones where you’re not bumping into everyone else covering the same topic. It allowed me to bring a perspective that otherwise wouldn’t exist. There’s no competition for these types of stories. I don’t have a mission or agenda to do PR for a community. I just want to tell these complex human beings’ stories and let them unfold.”

Katie Couric’s Smile Electrifies PR for Iraqi Power Company

Iraq’s Electricity Ministry is fighting its reputation for corruption and inefficacy by plastering billboards featuring Katie Couric and her winning smile around Baghdad. This strange PR campaign resulted from the ministry’s need to placate a disgruntled population sweltering in 110-degree heat while navigating an obstacle course of religious and cultural mores.

The one rule the ministry chose to ignore, however, is the rule banning the theft of copyrighted material. But oh well. When rebuilding a nation, electricity trumps intellectual property rights. Apparently Iraq’s Electricity Ministry has much to learn about public relations and brand integration. Read more

Revolving Door: ‘Good Afternoon America,’ magazine covers, and more

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ABC News will launch a nine-week hour-long program called Good Afternoon America, an extension of GMA, starting July 9. Josh Elliott and Lara Spencer will host with special appearance by other GMA newscasters. The show will air at 2 p.m. ET.

And NBC News anchor and TODAY show weekend anchor Amy Robach has moved toABC News.

The magazine cover takes on renewed significance. [via AdWeek]

Katie Couric at the University of Virginia commencement: ““Some said I lacked ‘gravitas,’ which I’ve since decided is Latin for ‘testicles.’” [via TVNewser]

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NY Women in Communications Invites You To Connect

If you ever got a terrific piece of career advice, here is your opportunity to share it.

New York Women in Communications has launched an interactive video series called “Connect with the Women Who Connect the World,” featuring journalists Katie Couric and Arianna Huffington, Internet executive Susan Lyne, marketing expert Mary Lou Quinlan, and CRT/Tanaka‘s chief creative officer Patrice Tanaka (pictured, who talks about her late-in-life adoption of ballroom dancing). Each has won a Matrix Award from Women in Communications.

Women interested in participating in the program are asked to record and submit a 25-second video sharing the best advice they have ever received.

A montage of the produced series will launch at The Matrix Awards on April 23, held during a luncheon at The Waldorf Hotel, where the 2012 Matrix Award honorees will be saluted. The organization plans to continue the series throughout the year to inspire the next generations of communications pros.

Revolving Door: ‘Newsroom,’ Couric on ‘GMA,’ Palin on ‘TODAY’

The trailer for Aaron Sorkin’s new HBO series Newsroom has been released and it’s got it all — an irate newsman, viral video, F-bombs, and McCoy from Law & Order. The show debuts June 24.

Katie Couric is the week-long guest host of Good Morning America. She got started this morning.

After building suspense over the “legend” that would be making an appearance today, Meredith Vieira made a special appearance on the TODAY show to announce that she’ll be joining the crew to broadcast from the London Olympics.

And more TODAY show surprises this morning when Matt Lauer made a call to Sarah Palin, who will be hosting the show tomorrow. Matt asked if she’s reading newspapers in preparation. Zing!

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Will the Yahoo!/ABC News Partnership Change Your Media Strategy?

ABC News brought out the big guns this morning — Diane Sawyer, Katie Couric, Barbara Walters, George Stephanopoulos, and more — to announce an enhanced partnership between ABC News and Yahoo! on Good Morning America. According to the press release, ABC News and Yahoo! News editorial teams will be working together to create “premium content” and cover big news events; there will be new original Web series, including “Newsmakers,” which launches today with an interview between President Obama and Stephanopoulos at 2:35 ET; and Good Morning America now has a co-branded website.

It’s been noted already across the media that Yahoo! and ABC News partnered more than a decade ago, but the partnership was dubbed “brand new” during the announcement this morning. Yahoo News has more unique visitors than any other website, The New York Times says.

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