Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Everything you wanted to know about Press trips…

Well, maybe not everything. But there’s a couple of interesting articles over at Inkthinker and Notes in the Margin that can fill you in on the how’s and why’s of Press Trips.

Written by Roy A. Barnes, a travel writer from Wyoming, they are definitely worth a read...

Guest Article — How Writers Can Score Press Trips, Part I: Landing A Press Trip

How Writers Can Score Press Trips, Part II: Things To Keep In Mind Before Attending

To press trip or not is a controversial issue amongst travel writers. When Sheila Scarborough from Family Travel and Perceptive Travel Blog wrote a guest post here last year, it brought quite a negative response from some writers on the Media Bistro bulletin board.

Personally, I think that there is a place for press trips and FAM trips and that it is up to each individual writer to look into the ethic and moral issues involved in taking such a trip. Traveling and experiencing places to write about is not cheap (especially when you live on the other side of the world). As long as you are honest, fair, and true in your writing, press trips should be an acceptable means of gathering information.

What do you think?

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1 comment:

laradunston said...

To press trip or not press trip? Good question. While I hate the idea of those awful group trips with structured itineraries and full schedules which I have to admit I have never been on and don't wish to go on, I can see their value, even if they're not my thing. I don't see an ethical problem here, as long as a writer still maintains their ability to be critical. And they should.

However, I've seen the stories that often come out of those and often they're very similar to eachother - it takes a highly creative writer to write something original out of one of those trips. And how is it any different to being on an organized tour? I guess if your aim is to assess the tour itself then it wouldn't be so bad. But it must be hard to interact with locals and to be able to be alone and reflect upon what you're experiencing.

But then there are other press trips coordinated for solo journalists or writer-photographer teams where the PR agency creates a fairly flexible itinerary, which aren't so bad, although again, you're seeing a place through the PR person's eyes, seeing what they want you to see.

What I've found a lot of writers don't know is that you can go to PR reps and ask them to help *you* coordinate the press trip you want to do, so you tell them what you want to experience and how it will benefit their client, and they can coordinate something to suit your needs, and you can make sure you have enough free time to do all the other things you need to do too.

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