20 05

ADF Press Conference and Morning session: May 20, 2024

Joya Breems from Dordt University

This morning, we got the opportunity to hold a press conference with representatives from the case Alliance of Hippocratic Medicine V. FDA. Last night I prepared by going through the case notes online and making sure I had a good understanding of the basic issues of the case and formulated a few questions. After a quick breakfast and getting dressed in my business casual best we were off.

This press conference kind of intimidated me because legal jargon is complicated to understand for a plebian journalist like me that has no previous law experience. AND the press conference was hosted by actual representatives who argued the case in front of the supreme court, so I wanted my questions to be intelligent and challenging.

After the first speaker, I could tell that my research paid off to the point where I was really understanding the main arguments of the case and began to relax a bit more and be present at the conference. I was frustrated that they repeated a lot of the same information and dodged a lot of the questions or resorted to familiar talking points. Despite that, it was actually pretty fun; I wish I could do the press conference over and ask even more specific questions.

After the press conference, we debriefed and learned the importance of assertiveness and follow up questions. The speakers admitted to dodging a lot of our questions (apparently good questions usually get less straightforward answers) and they applauded us on our background research, so I guess my late night of cramming in legal briefs paid off. For a first press conference experience, I think it went well!

In the morning session, we also learned about broadcasting and how writing for broadcasts is different than writing for print, it’s shorter, more straightforward, and has opportunities for setting the scene through ambient audio and creating a soundscape. We will be using the content from the press conference to create a TV package later this week.