It's easy to see why journalists turned press officers are so smug.
They earn a shit load more than us, they work less hours than us, they control the flow of information to the press, and they get a chance to get one over on us on a daily basis.
I would feel smug.
The one tiny piece of information that allows me to tolerate these useless, lying, toss merchants is that I know they couldn't hack it when it came to doing our jobs.
The majority became PRs because they were so feeble at being journalists they had no choice.
What other job can a useless hack do? (Except working for a politician).
However, when they enter the profession they suddenly become super hacks (especially when they move to a new area) lording it over the local press pack, telling tales of their days as a jobbing journo. And then proceeding to tell you how to do your job.
Make sure you google them. Or phone the paper they came from. Any information about past indiscretions pays dividends in the end.
Watch for them dropping anonymous comments on anti-establishment stories on your websites. We have caught a couple and that works wonders in the old blackmail department.
Why do I loathe press officers so much? Could it be their attitude? Their refusal to provide us with the basic details? Their failure to let us know when there are major events breaking until a day later? Could it be the idea they try and give that if we upset them they can punish us?
Or their inability to understand why we are reluctant to tell them all the details of the story in the fear they tell everyone else?
Just because they are the newsroom equivalent of the school kids who get their head flushed down the toilet, is that any reason to be so petty and bureaucratic?
Or maybe this is the reason they are perfect for the job in the first place.