The vomit principle, the dead bat, the freeze: how political spin doctors’ tactics aim to shape the news

Description

It’s election season again and behind the scenes, the political “spin doctors” are working around the clock.

They are the campaign advisers, social media strategists, press secretaries and others who craft political messages to help “sell” their candidate. The term “spin” is contested, of course, and like the phrase “fake news” has become an easy retort for people who reject any version of events that does not reflect their own.

But the fact is any good spin doctor employs a range of overt and covert tactics to get their message across, and I’ve listed some below.

This list is drawn from a range of academic and other sourcesand my own personal experience as a “spin doctor”. (I was once a media adviser to Labor’s Anna Bligh, a former Queensland premier. I am also married to one.) It is by no means exhaustive, but it provides an overview of some of the traditional tactics employed by political media advisers and politicians.

 
 

Subject

Political communication

 
 
Period1 Feb 2019

Media contributions

1

Media contributions

  • TitleThe vomit principle, the dead bat, the freeze: how political spin doctors’ tactics aim to shape the news
    Degree of recognitionNational
    Media name/outletThe Conversation
    Media typeWeb
    CountryAustralia
    Date1/02/19
    DescriptionIt’s election season again and behind the scenes, the political “spin doctors” are working around the clock.

    They are the campaign advisers, social media strategists, press secretaries and others who craft political messages to help “sell” their candidate. The term “spin” is contested, of course, and like the phrase “fake news” has become an easy retort for people who reject any version of events that does not reflect their own.

    But the fact is any good spin doctor employs a range of overt and covert tactics to get their message across, and I’ve listed some below.

    This list is drawn from a range of academic and other sources, and my own personal experience as a “spin doctor”. (I was once a media adviser to Labor’s Anna Bligh, a former Queensland premier. I am also married to one.) It is by no means exhaustive, but it provides an overview of some of the traditional tactics employed by political media advisers and politicians.
    Producer/AuthorCaroline Fisher
    PersonsCaroline Fisher