Should you demand to see your quotes before they appear?

Some organisations have a rule that they will only allow their spokespeople to talk to journalists on the basis that they will be allowed to see the quotes before they appear in the finished article – otherwise, no deal. This can be appropriate in some circumstances, for example where financially sensitive material is involved, or on technical topics where you are not sure that the reporter has fully understood what you have said – you do not want a mangled quote to appear, perhaps making you look silly in print. My advice is to try not to make this too much of a blanket policy however – under time pressure, reporters will simply ignore you because of the hassle-factor and go to someone else for comment, and you will be left out of the loop. If you do want quote approval, try to be friendly about agreeing the rules where possible, rather than laying down the law – you might be able to use a phrase such as “I’m happy to talk to you, but would it be OK if you could run the quotes by me before they appear?” Then you can head off factual errors from appearing, but what you should certainly not do is use this process as a means of back-tracking on things you have said. The reporter will want to use your strongest quotes, and if you feel afterwards you have been a little too controversial and start removing them or making them much more bland, they will not be at all happy. (Taken from the book The M-Factor by Tom Maddocks.)