How to handle minor misquotes in the press

Should you ask a reporter to correct a quote that’s slightly off, or let it go?

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“I didn’t say that—in fact, I would never say that,” the client insists.

Thing is, the misquote isn’t terrible; it’s actually minor. But still, it’s gnawing at you.

Do you ask the reporter for a correction, or ignore the error?

Recently, a reader of my blog posed this question. Crisis communications professional Melissa Agnes said:

“I got interviewed by a reporter last week, but the reporter seems to have misquoted me. It’s not a bad misquote, but it isn’t something that I remember saying—well, actually, I’m sure that I didn’t say it. Should I ask him to retract it, even if it’s actually good advice that I probably would have given if he had framed his question differently?”

Great question, Melissa! You’re not alone in this concern; I’ve also been the victim of minor misquotes and have had to make similar choices about whether to say anything to the reporter.

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