Writing news releases and preparing media kits


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Prepare by reading a local or national newspaper, either in print or online. Choose a story about a new proposal in state government. Look for the original press release on the government website. (Alternatively, you could find a press release first and then look for any corresponding stories.)

Compare the media story to the press release. Post to the Discussion Forum:

  • A brief summary of the story (one paragraph or less)
  • Whether or not anything was copied directly from the news release
  • Whether or not the reporter did any additional news gathering or solely relied on the release
  • If a photo was published, your opinion on the photo
  • Whether or not the newspaper or the government amplified the story on social media
    • If they did, what platforms they used and how many posts
  • Whether or not you think the reporter did a good job, and what the reporter could have done better

Most major government entities have a press release section on their website. Here is an example from New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

New York State Governor’s website: Governor Cuomo announces awards for seven farm-to-school programs to benefit nearly 300,000 students across the state

Two stories generated by the release:SoutholdLOCAL. (2016, December 7). Greenport school district wins $68,820 state grant to support farm-to-school program for North Fork schools. Southold LOCAL.

Bostick, C. (2016, December 2). Mohawk Valley to receive farm-to-school money. Utica Observer-Dispatch.

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