Saturday, April 25, 2009

Not in LA

The Nebula Awards banquet is currently unfolding two timezones away from me, on the campus of UCLA. Obviously, I am not in California to participate in this shindig, despite my standing as an SFWA official-type person. Instead, due to financial considerations (and there are always financial considerations when you've got three kids) I'm here at Blaschke World Headquarters dealing with the official media release announcing the Nebula Award winners. The release which I sent out roughly 45 minutes ago, with an embargo slapped on it for 11:45 p.m. PDT. For the non-journalists out there, that means the material is provided to media outlets in advance as a courtesy, and that it is absolutely not to be published until after 11:45 p.m. on the west coast of the United States. Which is where the awards ceremony is happening, so that word of the winners doesn't filter through the crowd before the actual announcement is made. Clever huh?

In my day job at Texas State University, I've had several occasions where an embargoed release was a necessity. I hate them, because some foolish person somewhere goes ahead and publishes the material ahead of time and thus breaks the embargo. In such cases, my wrath is swift and terrible, being the crochety journalist that I am.

I am VERY wrathful right now. Read into that what you will.

Now Playing: Violent Femmes Why Do Birds Sing?

1 comment:

  1. I can relate. I don't much like embargoed press releases (on the sending side). But on the receiving side, I've found them necessary. Then the problem becomes, as you note, some yahoo breaking embargo. And, of course, sometimes the "do not publish until" time is just too late to help, because the news is going to be public before that time. It's a struggle every which way. In my case, I was hoping to have something so I didn't have to stay up until 2 in the morning posting the news.

    Maybe that's the next killer ap: finding a way to do embargoed press releases that work.

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