Ben Carson Adviser Kills Interview In Progress: “This Is Over”

Presidential candidate Ben Carson recently sat down for an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper.

Tapper pressed Carson about a comment he made last week regarding Muslims: “I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that.”

After several minutes of questioning on the matter, a Carson adviser, who was off-camera, said, “This interview is over.” That brief moment leads to a question: When is it a good idea for PR professionals to cut off an interview midstream?


Good Media Interview Example: A Physician On Robin Williams

In their wonderful book Made to Stick, Dan and Chip Heath offer two ways to describe a pomelo to a person who hasn’t heard of it. 

The first way is to infuse the definition with detail:

“A pomelo is the largest citrus fruit. The rind is very thick but soft and easy to peel away. The resulting


15 Years Ago Today: A Wave I’ll Never Forget

On October 20, 1999, Elizabeth Dole—a former Reagan and Bush cabinet secretary—ended her bid for the 2000 Republican presidential nomination.

I was working at CNN in Washington, D.C. at the time. As I was leaving work late that night and crossing through the building’s quiet front lobby, I noticed Ms. Dole entering for her appearance on


March 2014: The Worst Video Media Disaster

Last summer, media critic Jay Rosen announced he would no longer criticize CNN. “As of today, I have retired from criticism of CNN for falling short of some sort of journalistic standard that news providers should maintain. That activity no longer makes sense.”

Rosen argued that since CNN no longer holds itself to news standards, it


20 Years Ago: The Al Gore / Ross Perot NAFTA Debate

Twenty years ago tomorrow—on November 9, 1993—Vice President Al Gore and billionaire businessman Ross Perot appeared on CNN’s Larry King Live to debate the merits of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). More than 16 million people tuned in to the high-profile debate.

NAFTA was a controversial piece of legislation that created a trade bloc


Are Journalists Rebelling Against Going Off-The-Record?

Attorney General Eric Holder is meeting with bureau chiefs from major news outlets this week for off-the-record sessions. They’re discussing the recent revelations that the Department of Justice seized phone records from Associated Press reporters and investigated Fox News reporter James Rosen for his reporting of sensitive leaked government information.

Not everybody is playing ball –


“Reliable Sources” Host Discuses His Unreliable Work

Disclaimer: From 1999-2001, I served as one of three full-time producers for CNN’s Reliable Sources. I worked with host Howard Kurtz for two years. I left the show on good terms, but have spoken to Howie only once since leaving. During our time on the show together (and when producing a few of his pieces


April 2013: The Worst Video Media Disaster

If you follow my Twitter feed (I’m at @MrMediaTraining), you know that I often have critical words to say about CNN. Based on my tweets alone, you might reasonably conclude that I hate the network.

The truth is I don’t. I’m just bitterly disappointed in what the network has become. CNN’s decline has occurred at the

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