MASS MEDIA AND FOOTBALL
Each National Association should have a Media Officer. The Media Officer should be:
1 an experienced journalist
1 knowledgeable in football
1 neutral, not favouring any other journalist/nespaper/TV or Radio station
1 active and creative
1 committed to the National Association.
The duties of the Media Officer are both on-going and related to major events, including:-
1 Co-ordination with the National Association leaders to determine what information may be passed to the media.
1 Supply of information to the national and international media.
1 Media releases.
1 Contacts with other Associations and international bodies.
1 Accreditation for national and international events.
1 Media kits for special events.
1 Media facilities for special events (e.g. equipped media centre, telecommunication facilities, media seats, refreshments).
It is acknowledged however that not all Associations are in a position to appoint a full-time Media Officer. In such cases, it is however, important that an arrangement be made with a respected journalist or person of suitable experience to act as Media Officer on the occasion of major events, to ensure the proper provision of facilities for such occasions.
Today’s media are increasingly mobile and have ever more opportunities to travel to matches in other countries. Inevitably, they then make comparisons with regard to the varying standards of organisational competence. The impression that a National Association makes on visiting media is just as important as the impression made on its national media.
A Press Conference is a routine matter for the working media. Unless the story is newsworthy, a Press Conference is a waste of time for the journalist.
The general rule for Press Conference is simple:
They must be used sparingly. If you have any doubt about whether to call a Press Conference, please don’t call it.
The main advantages of a Press Conference from a newspaper’s point of view (which is all that should be considered) are that it permits each publication to develop an individual story, facilitates questioning and releases a news opportunity to all at the same time. – (Marston, the Nature of Public Relations.)
- When to call a Press Conference
Press Conference should be called only for extra-ordinary events. Routine announcements are best handled by press releases.
There are two basic types of Press Conferences: Those called to announce some special news and those that are used to allow the media access to particularly newsworthy personalities.
The publicist’s (Media Officer’s) job in both cases is to facilitate communication between a primary source, the authority on the announcement issue or the personality, and the media.
The size of the community determines to a great extent what is big news and worthy of a Press Conference.