The AusSMC is able to run online media briefings for journalists around Australia. All briefings are streamed live over the Internet making them easily accessible to journalists throughout the country. Journalists are increasingly unable to spend the time to attend research institutions or conferences in person and these briefings allow more journalists to access the science at your institution. Experts are targeted to give short presentations and answer media questions.

What makes a good briefing?

Our briefings usually consist of 2-3 speakers speaking around a central topic or theme. Where possible briefings must be based on quality peer reviewed published research.

The central topic must have broad news appeal.

Sourcing experts and topics

Topics must have news value and speakers must be willing to brief journalists on the record.

If the briefing stems from a conference we ask that conference organisers go through the conference program and provide the AusSMC with a list of suggestions for briefing topics and speakers.

Editorial independence

The AusSMC has final editorial control of the topic and makeup of any briefing panel.

Who attends?

Our briefings attract a mix of general news journalists and specialist reporters. We invite journalists from all mainstream media publications and news agencies eg News Ltd, ABC, Reuters etc.  It is best to assume that none of them will have a history of covering stories in your area of expertise.

The format

Each presenter is generally given a maximum of 5-7 minutes for a presentation. When all the presentations are finished, we try to allow around 20 minutes for media questions.  The event is streamed online using a phone line and web conferencing tool called WebEx.  Journalists joining online will be able to see any slides speakers may have and hear their presentation.

Timing

Briefings are best run in the morning – between 10 and 11am Australian Eastern Time is ideal. Briefings work best when they run the day before the opening day of the conference.

Costs

AusSMC does not charge for this service but where possible operates on a cost recovery basis.

Facilities

In most instances the briefings are run purely online and the speakers need only a phone line and computer in front of them. Most speakers choose to speak at briefings from the comfort of their offices.

If the briefing is being run from a conference or at a location that the media will be invited to attend then we need a phone line and a quiet suitable space where media can gather and speakers are clearly audible. An Ethernet connection is also desirable but not essential as we can operate the briefings using our portable USB WiFi devices if required.