Old Sep 20th 2008, 04:39 PM   #1
east coast producer
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Default Obama press credentials: Ethics question.

If you haven't seen them, this is the Obama campaign-issued press pass:



I'm curious.. would you have a problem wearing that? Rather than some sort of elaborate pass to foil counterfeiters and to identify you as press, these carry campaign slogans.

I'd have an ethical issue wearing a press pass with a campaign slogan smeared across it. Is this typical? Would you have an ethical problem with it? How would you handle it?

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Old Sep 20th 2008, 05:17 PM   #2
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Not cover the event.
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Old Sep 20th 2008, 06:01 PM   #3
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This has been around since at least Bush/Gore. I don't have a problem with it. It's just a press pass (yes, I wore a Bush press pass in 2004.)

I have a friend who pins many of his press passes to his run bag. He got booted from a Bush event for his Gore pass (among about 15 other) being pinned to his bag.
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Old Sep 20th 2008, 07:44 PM   #4
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Call me old school, but I don't like it. I don't like the slogan on the pass. I don't like that Press is way smaller than the rest of the stuff.

But you probably have no choice. I don't know what you could do about it.

Idea: You could stick a station sticker over the slogan part of it.
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Old Sep 20th 2008, 08:04 PM   #5
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I do not like it either. at all. either party.
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 05:04 AM   #6
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Not cover the event.
Yeah, like you have the authority to make that call.

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Old Sep 21st 2008, 12:00 PM   #7
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Call me old school, but I don't like it. I don't like the slogan on the pass. I don't like that Press is way smaller than the rest of the stuff.

But you probably have no choice. I don't know what you could do about it.

Idea: You could stick a station sticker over the slogan part of it.
Then they probably would stop you and make you peel it off before entering the event.

And as a poster above said, it doesn't matter which party. It's just shameless self-promotion that implies you support the candidate.
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 01:31 PM   #8
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So say you go cover a sporting event... the press pass features the logo of the home team. Does wearing the pass imply you support the home school?
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 02:17 PM   #9
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Funny this was brought up here. When I recently covered the event I looked at the pass and it didn't look right. I agree it is pathetic self-promotion. At the time it did cross my mind, but it is what it is. When McCain rolls through here I'm sure they will have their huge logo on it too.

I looked at some of my other press passes from years past. A lot of them clearly have Media much larger than any logo. But a lot of these weren't political events.
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 03:27 PM   #10
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Anybody else getting the calls from the Obama campaign every single saturday?? Our local obama group manages to schedule an event every saturday and calls and complains when we blow off the minor events.

Their attitude pisses me off just enough that I always seem to find a reason why my crews cant attend.
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 07:05 PM   #11
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Quote:
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So say you go cover a sporting event... the press pass features the logo of the home team. Does wearing the pass imply you support the home school?
No, the star on my cap usually gave me away covering Dallas games awhile back.
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 07:54 PM   #12
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So say you go cover a sporting event... the press pass features the logo of the home team. Does wearing the pass imply you support the home school?
I believe it's the slogan, not the logo, that bothers the above poster.
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 08:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s'news View Post

Idea: You could stick a station sticker over the slogan part of it.

Love it, s'news. Would like to see someone try it.

As long as everything below BELIEVE IN is clearly visible, there shouldn't be a problem. Right?!?
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Old Sep 21st 2008, 08:11 PM   #14
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or just use gaffers tape...
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 06:02 AM   #15
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I got one of those exact passes from an event I covered. I don't know how Obama staff would react to covering the "Change we can believe in" part of it. But, for what it's worth, for the event I covered they also put round stickers on the passes that were in different colors based on where you were allowed access to. So altering the pass might cause problems as far as access and being stopped and hassled by security.
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 08:11 AM   #16
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I'd cover it with an exact font replica that states "CHANGE...PLEASE DONATE TO ME...I'M WITH THE PRESS....
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 09:08 AM   #17
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Covered an Obama event last month ... the press had to sign in before they were issued their credentials, a process that included listing your business e-mail address. The very next day, and for several days thereafter, I received e-mails from the Obama campaign asking for my help in getting him elected ... much like someone who had donated money might receive. (I quickly asked them to remove my name from their lists) I realize it's reasonable for them to assume that most of the press is in the tank for Obama (which they certainly are), but that seemed a bit much. Never had that happen with any other political candidate I've covered.
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 11:08 AM   #18
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Feh, it's just a press pass. If you're using one, chances are there's much bigger Obama signage where you are, and nobody's looking at your pass.

When McCain and Palin came to GB last week, their press pass was an overhead shot of pre-2003 renovation Lambeau Field, with the McCain star logo Photoshopped onto the field and "McCAIN-PALIN" in the end zones.



Yeah, that thingy up top. (Bad omen, considering the Dallas game was coming up...let's not go there, Produce.)

Weird thing is...at McCain events, all you have to do is show your regular press credentials at the door, and they give you the event's press pass. No pre-registration necessary. Not so with Obama's campaign.

Weird.
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 12:11 PM   #19
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 06:39 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by east coast producer View Post
If you haven't seen them, this is the Obama campaign-issued press pass:



I'm curious.. would you have a problem wearing that? Rather than some sort of elaborate pass to foil counterfeiters and to identify you as press, these carry campaign slogans.

I'd have an ethical issue wearing a press pass with a campaign slogan smeared across it. Is this typical? Would you have an ethical problem with it? How would you handle it?
If the logo and slogan sizes were switched I think it would be appropriate. I'm fine with a huge logo... but a huge slogan, not so fond of.
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 06:45 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clever Login Name View Post
Covered an Obama event last month ... the press had to sign in before they were issued their credentials, a process that included listing your business e-mail address. The very next day, and for several days thereafter, I received e-mails from the Obama campaign asking for my help in getting him elected ... much like someone who had donated money might receive. (I quickly asked them to remove my name from their lists) I realize it's reasonable for them to assume that most of the press is in the tank for Obama (which they certainly are), but that seemed a bit much. Never had that happen with any other political candidate I've covered.
This is why I use a good old standby on all forms I have to sign in for -- acooper@cnn.com
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Old Sep 22nd 2008, 07:23 PM   #22
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Feh, it's just a press pass. If you're using one, chances are there's much bigger Obama signage where you are, and nobody's looking at your pass.
Agreed, Thrill.

But... if you're expected to wear the pass at all times, and you're doing liveshots or S/U's while wearing it around your neck, it would be fairly obvious to a viewer at home.

Not to mention promotional.
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Old Sep 23rd 2008, 03:31 AM   #23
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Agreed, Thrill.

But... if you're expected to wear the pass at all times, and you're doing liveshots or S/U's while wearing it around your neck, it would be fairly obvious to a viewer at home.

Not to mention promotional.
A) That doesn't look like the kind of pass you'd wear around your neck.
B) Even if you add your own lanyard and wear it around your neck while reporting, you can tuck the lanyard in your pocket, wrap it around a belt loop, give it to the photog to hold, etc.
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