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Paddy Hintz
Senior Consultant - Media & Communications

Sumptuous streaming drama “The Crown’’ must be providing journalists who slaved away during the Diana Years with wry viewing pleasure currently.

Well before journalism was sent to the Sin Bin for Hacking Gate, leading to the demise of that paradise for punning subeditors, The News of the World, journalism was seriously on the nose in the years leading up to and after Diana’s death.

“Hounded to her death’’, was the common refrain in the face of such a tragic loss. At a time when even your mother is calling members of your profession “monster!’’, there is no defending journalism.

Most journalists, at least those engaged in news gathering at metropolitan or national level, learn from photographer mates that paparazzi are often tipped off about the whereabouts of celebrities by the subjects themselves.

The relationship between paparazzi and subject is, therefore, usually a transactional one.

Photographers of famous people are often freelancers working for agencies that sell pictures to the major newspapers of the world. Celebrity agents often contact these agencies to advise where and when their clients will be for any number of reasons, be it to promote a film, drive publicity for a business or avenge a partner’s high-profile infidelity.

It is incredibly sad that Diana’s engagement of the media did not end well. But binge-watching viewing such as “The Crown’’ and the Channel Four-produced series “The Royal House of Windsor’’ is a reminder that there are two sides to the media story.

In the heat of the battle, when your carefully crafted statement, media release or response to a crisis is not given the respect you think it so justly deserves, it can be hard not to cry “monster’’ at the media.

Unfortunately, journalists are all too used to that badge.

Given the limited amount of information most journalists actually have access to in today’s well managed “information age’’, journalists will often push as hard as they can with the scant facts at their disposal to drive a story further up the page and click ratings.

That can sometimes hurt when you are caught in the crosshairs on a particular story, particularly when you feel you have been unfairly treated.

Being professional, expecting while giving respect, and knowing when to correct the record and when to let it slide, will, however, stand you in good stead.

The SAS Group’s Media and Communications division is staffed by respected former senior metropolitan news journalists with full contact books, in business and the media. We can help you navigate the media terrain.

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