A surprisingly frequent conversation we have with media relations clients is why a press release or (lengthy) quote wasn't used verbatim.

Perhaps it is unique to our client group - lawyers and accountants - but I suspect not.

And it doesn't seem to matter how many times or how long we spend coaching an individual.

And now, thanks to Simon English, a reporter on the business pages of the Evening Standard, I have the perfect answer.

"We didn't become hacks because we like taking dictation." 

OK, he was talking about how business leaders try and tell reporters the angle to take on a story, but the answer still rings true.

A press release is the start for a story - not the story. And a lengthy quote is rarely used in full.