Press releases …. aaaaghhhhhh

Posted on April 22nd, 2008 in Opinion by Julian Edgar

All major companies and organisations use Public Relations employees. These people, effectively employed to put the greatest positive spin possible on anything to do with their company or organisation, send out an endless stream of press releases.

Ten or twenty of these press releases lob into my email in-box every day of the week, telling me all about the wonderful things the companies have been doing.

The trouble is, most of these press releases are just rubbish. In fact, the vast majority are rubbish.

I truly don’t know how so many PR people keep their jobs. As part of my Graduate Diploma in Journalism, I did a compulsory unit of Public Relations studies. (In some bizarre manner that I will never understand, in some people’s eyes, Public Relations and Journalism are allied trades. I fail to see any connection whatsoever.) But together with my journalism experience of something like 15 years, I am quite well qualified to be a PR practitioner.

But I’d rather dig holes.

You’d think that public relations peoples would have a good idea of what journalists want. After all, they deal with journalists day-in and day-out.

Journalists want stories. They want good quality stories achieved with – to be blunt – as little work as possible. That means they want a heap of unbiased, factually correct information – and far more than will actually be used. They want good quality pics, they want tight text (preferably as bulleted points) and they want direct quotes.

In other words, they want the raw material that, with more research and better writing, can be turned into an informative and strong story.

All kind of obvious? You sure wouldn’t think so.

Here’s an absolutely typical press release.

First, just the headline arrives in my in-box:

“Doors Open for VACC Future Car Competition Winners”

This year’s VACC Target 2020 – Design the Future Car competition has uncovered rising stars of the automotive design industry.

OK, so (in typical fashion) the PR person assumes that all who receive this will know what ‘VACC’ stands for. I vaguely think it might be something like ‘Victorian Chamber of Commerce’ but that can’t be quite right.

Then, in my role as an editor, I look at this cryptic message and mentally figure if a story can be built around it.

My thought processes go something like this:

Hmm, a ‘future car competition’. OK, maybe if the press release includes a heap of pics of the different car designs, good descriptions of those designs, and interviews (with quotes) with the designers of these ‘cars of the future’ – well then, that would be starting to look like a story.

Especially, of course, if the cars themselves are actually good…

Or perhaps the story could be about the designers themselves – if the press release has strong ‘personality’ pics, maybe something on the designers’ history, how they got into cars…  It could be a potential story inspiring of others who would like to do something similar.

The latter story idea is less in AutoSpeed’s line, but if the raw material was strong enough, it could still be a possibility.

But either of these stories will happen only if there’s plenty of good, strong content in the press release. So I click on the link and go to the full press release. This is what I read:

Doors Open for VACC Future Car Competition Winners

This year’s VACC Target 2020 – Design the Future Car competition has uncovered rising stars of the automotive design industry.

Four winners now each have personal cheques of $3000 in prize money, plus a further $3000 for their education facility, presented to them at the Melbourne International Motor Show.

In addition, two of the winners have been snapped up by Ford and Holden.

Chris Chan, (22), of Monash University, took first prize in the Tertiary model-making category. He has been offered a full time job in clay modelling at GM Holden.

“Having my work exhibited and on display at the Melbourne International Motor show was very important. It means the public and the world’s motor manufacturers got to see my ideas. If you are looking for a career in the automotive industry, it is very important to have exposure,” Chris said.

Liam Ferguson, (22) also from Monash University, took first prize in the Tertiary design category for his astonishing “Hornet” design. He is now an intern with Ford Australia, in the design department.

“Target 2020 has definitely been a massive influence in gaining my position at Ford, which says a lot for the competition. It really drove me to push myself, as far as surface-styling goes with this (design) vehicle,” Liam said.

VACC General Manager, Communications and Marketing, Tim O’Brien, said Target 2020 is about encouraging students to think expansively about the future of motoring.

“The problems these model makers, designers and essayists accept – things like environmental considerations, congestion, and scarce resources – are challenging and real. The creative and credible solutions we find in their entries, and the sophistication of their thinking, amazes the judges.

“We are always surprised by the talent Target 2020 brings to the surface. The competition is now beginning to capture the imagination of schools, universities and TAFEs. Each year more get involved and every year the standard goes up.

“VACC is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. To compare car design from 1918 with where it is today, and where our Target 2020 designers show it is heading in the future, is incredible,” Mr O’Brien said.

Details of the next VACC Future Car competition will be announced soon.

No photos are attached to the press release (and some press releases have lots of pics). Instead, it says to contact the ‘Senior Media Officer’ at the VACC for images.

Now look, as I told you earlier, this is an absolutely typical press release.

Some guys have won prizes for car designs that are not described or pictured in the press release. The prizes were given by the VACC (and I still don’t know what that is; it’s not identified anywhere in the release). The release is clearly trying to pump up the VACC – but no media organisation is going to give a rat’s arse about that… it’s simply not news.

Result from this editor’s perspective? – yet another press release of no interest. No wonder I often delete 10 or 20 at a time without even reading them…


Here’s a randon sample of more press releases at the time I am writing this blog.

Hyundai iMax Offers Free Media Shuttle to Adelaide Motor Show – Media travelling to the Adelaide Motor Show from the airport on Tuesday 1 April or Wednesday 2 April can travel to the event with ease in the new Hyundai iMax

Mitsubishi Motors Transfers Production of SUV for PSA Peugeot Citroen – Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) announces today that it has decided to transfer production of all EU-bound SUVs it supplies to PSA Peugeot Citroen from its Mizushima Plant (Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture), where they are currently built, to its European production hub, Netherlands Car B.V. (“NedCar”, Born, The Netherlands)

Stokell Looks to Revive Wakefield Winning Feeling – Paul Stokell is familiar with successfully piloting quite heavy machines around the 2.2 kilometre Wakefield Park circuit. Next weekend – April 4-6 – it all changes for Stokell when he returns to the Goulburn (NSW) venue for the second round of MINI CHALLENGE.

Two More Awards for BMW Design Excellence – BMW has again been awarded for its excellence in design, picking up two 2008 Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards.

All-new Mazda2 Wins 2008 World Car of the Year AwardFrom an initial entry list of thirty-nine (39) new vehicles from all over the world, the overall 2008 WCOTY title was announced on Thursday March 20, 2008 at the New York International Auto Show. The Mazda2 edged out the Ford Mondeo and Mercedes-Benz C-Class to take the overall award.

…great stuff, eh? And you can imagine just how extensive the media coverage is that results from this dross – NOT!

24 Responses to 'Press releases …. aaaaghhhhhh'

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  1. Stewart said,

    on April 23rd, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    You love it…….!

  2. Barry dal HERBERT said,

    on April 23rd, 2008 at 9:31 pm

    Meaningless twaddle, all of it.

    And the very last example has some pseudo-legal nonsense that always gets up my nose – a number written in words with the same number as a numeral following in brackets. If it were the other way around, with the letters in brackets confirming the number (especially if it were a legal document, and it was hand written), then there would be a reason. But this way?

    At least there were no apostrophes before the S in plural words! So few people understand the correct placement of apostrophes that surely they will be abandoned altogether in the not too distant future?

  3. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 24th, 2008 at 7:05 am

    Got this one the other day. Count the mis-use of words, lack of commas, lack of hyphens, etc:

    Sportura All Star Chronographs

    Sporting sophistication is taken to a new level with two of the latest calibres from Seiko’s technically unmatched Sportura range. The Sportura Kinetic Chronograph and the Sportura Alarm Chronograph continue the fine engineering detail of the iconic sports watch collection.

    Drawing inspiration from the high-octane world of motor sports the two calibres are in a class of their own, a perfect fusion of style and performance. With sleek aerodynamic lines, watch features include scratch resistant sapphire glass, a screw down crown and easy to read dial.

    The Sportura Kinetic Chronograph features Seiko’s revolutionary Kinetic™ technology; using self generated energy to power the watch. The stopwatch measures 45 minutes in 1/5th of a second. A see-through case back allows the wearer to see the precision workings of the Kinetic Movement.

    Keeping you on time, every time, the Sportura Alarm Chronograph satisfies your need for speed measuring 60 minutes in 1/5th of a second. Each timepiece reinforces Sportura’s renowned characteristics of legibility, ease of use and powerful design.

    Seiko’s Sportura collection is available at selected jewellers and specialty retailers nation-wide. Customers can call 1300 300 776 for their nearest premium Seiko stockist or log onto to view the range.

  4. David Fernandez said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 2:45 pm

    Julian, this must be a boring period for you. Haven’t you got anything else better to do than to “dig holes” and criticise some of the press releases you receive? It appears to me that you seem to take some delight in bashing the PR profession (I also refer to your Hyundai press event story).

    Like it or not, PR and journalism are allied trades. In your own words you say “together with my journalism experience of something like 15 years, I am quite well qualified to be a PR practitioner”.

    Many good PR practitioners are well versed in journalistic skills, having either been journalists or studied journalism. Multinational organisations hire journalists to work in or head their PR departments. Like everyone else, some PR practitioners do their jobs better than others.

    And while I will agree that a well written press release may be more successful in getting the attention of busy editors like yourself, I would also say that a good editor will find a story in a badly written press release.

    If there really is no story, then bin the release! Why rant about it in your blog when there are better things to do like developing a series of new articles? If you need ideas for these then may I suggest covering the following in detail:
    An EFI conversion of a carburettored vehicle, and
    Installing and tuning a standalone ECU in an older EFI car.

  5. on April 25th, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Interesting comment from David Fernandez, but I did think that the idea of a Blog is to express your thoughts, which are quite frankly right on the money as far as I am concerned.

  6. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 5:30 pm


    Why, exactly, shouldn’t I criticise the mediocre standard of the press releases which are distributed?

  7. David Fernandez said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 7:14 pm

    I think your criticisms go beyond just poorly written press releases and I quote:

    “All major companies and organisations use Public Relations employees. These people, effectively employed to put the greatest positive spin possible on anything to do with their company or organisation, send out an endless stream of press releases.” In one swoop, you discredit an entire group of professionals as being a bunch of spin doctors.

    You may as well also fire a broadside in the direction of the advertising industry, surely masters of the art and science of “spin”. Perhaps in a future blog?

    OK, the VACC press release was perhaps a terrible example of a press release. However, as the good journalist and editor that you are (and I am not being sarcastic here), didn’t you think that a follow up was necessary?. Did you hound them to get the pictures, and perhaps arrange for an interview with the wining young designers and review their work? You’re the journalist and by ignoring the bigger story (of bright, young automobile designers), you have done Autospeed readers an injustice.

    Many journalists have forgotten how to probe and dig a story out. You expected to have the entire story laid out for you in the VACC press release. It wasn’t and that wasn’t the best bit of public relations.

    However instead of going in hard and ridiculing it (and other press releases that don’t make the mark), you could have used your immense talent in providing Autospeed readers with a great story that was otherwise “lost” in a poorly executed press release. After all isn’t there just a bit too much of recycling of old stories going on here.

    Julian, I enjoy most of Autospeed, welcome your terrific knowledge and your admire your passion in sharing what you know with your readers. However, in my opinion you really need to take a kinder approach to the efforts of organisations and their personnel in attempting to communicate their messages to you and the rest of the media. Their press releases may not be the best but this does not mean that they are rubbish. It becomes rubbish only when even the best of journalists and editors can’t find a story in them worth writing about.

    To end, the irony is that the entire press release from the VACC has became part of your blog. Bad as it is, the press release has seen the light of day and is there for all here to see. The information has been picked-up and the work of the PR man done. Sadly the journalist has missed a great story.

  8. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 7:19 pm

    You didn’t actually answer the question I posed.

    Why, exactly, shouldn’t I criticise the mediocre standard of the vast majority of press releases?

    (If you don’t think they are typically mediocre, I am happy to post up the last dozen or so I have received and readers can make their own judgements.)

  9. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    In fact, why wait? here they are:

    24.04.2008, Brands and Products The new BMW M3 Convertible Following the UK media launch of the new M3 Convertible, attached is the detailed press kit plus pictures issued for the UK market.


    “MINI Challenge TV Alert: Round 2 Highlights”

    What: Highlights of MINI CHALLENGE, Round 2, Wakefield Park
    When: Saturday April 26, 2008
    Where: The Seven Network
    Time: 2:00pm (nationally)

    Stop the lawnmower, put the paintbrush down, grab a cold one from the fridge and mark the halfway point of the ANZAC Day Long Weekend with highlights from round two of MINI CHALLENGE.


    “Pure Performance with Extra Doors! The New S3 Sportback Breaks Cover”

    The 5-door version of Audi’s dynamic range-topping A3 has broken cover. The S3 Sportback will join the three-door Audi S3 around the end of 2008 in Australia.


    “Wanless Wants Wins in Motorline MINI”

    Multiple Australian Speedway Champion, Todd Wanless is the newest addition to the big names contesting the inaugural MINI CHALLENGE racing Series, when the Queenslander steps behind the wheel of Motorline MINI Garage’s MINI John Cooper Works CHALLENGE racecar from the Barbagallo Raceway round (May 9-11).


    “Mercedes-Benz Announces Pricing and Specifications for the Stunning New-Generation SL-Class Roadster”

    Melbourne – Mercedes-Benz today announced pricing and specifications for the new-generation SL-Class. Much more than just a standard facelift, the new-generation SL-Class is sportier than ever.


    Blood Group Comes On Board With SsangYong In Geelong
    SsangYong has announced the appointment of a new dealer in Geelong with the Blood Automotive Group signing on as the new outlet for SsangYong in Victoria’s second city. Blood Ssang…


    “Monroe Continues WTCC Success”

    For the third year running, Monroe is the Official Suspension Partner for the series, which is the biggest touring car championship in the world and is contested over 24 rounds across 12 countries including Germany, Italy, the UK and Brazil.


    “Dakar Series – Central Europe Rally (April 19-26)-Leg 4”

    Peterhansel still leads for Team Repsol Mitsubishi Ralliart, Luc Alphand 6th and Nani Roma 7th


    “3D Reverse Engineering Gives Tenneco the Edge”

    Tenneco has revealed it is using advanced three-dimensional (3D) Reverse Engineering to keep Monroe at the forefront of global ride control design technology.


    “Keen Mitsubishi Dealer Bids $100,000 for Final 380 Sedan Proceeds to be Donated to Charity”

    Mitsubishi Motors Australia Limited (MMAL) confirmed today the final build 380 sedan has sold at dealer auction to John Hughes Mitsubishi, Perth, for the unprecedented sum of $100,000.


    “Mitsubishi Motors Announces Production, Sales and Export Figures for March 2008 & for Fiscal Year 2007”

    Tokyo, April 23, 2008 — Mitsubishi Motors Corporation today announced global production, as well as domestic sales and export figures for both for March 2008 and the 2007 fiscal year.


    “The 2008 Peugeot Design Competition is Announced – “Imagine a Peugeot for the Megalopolis of Tomorrow””

    Young designers from all over the world are invited to ‘imagine a Peugeot for the megalopolis of tomorrow’. The competition is for a concept car to be designed for use in the centre of the great urban cities of the future, while embracing the key values of the 21st century and at the same time, bearing all of Peugeot’s recognised styling clues. Submitted entries must integrate all the four dimensions specific to this design competition: environmental friendliness, social harmony, interactive mobility and economic efficiency.


    “Auto China 2008: smart fortwo to be Launched in China in Mid 2009”

    Dr. Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler AG and head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, announced at the Auto China Beijing 2008 that the smart fortwo will be available to Chinese customers from mid 2009. Following the successful launch in the USA, smart is now set to open up another major automobile market.


    “Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Really Steps on the Gas”

    Stuttgart – Clean and economical at the same time – the natural-gas drive reconciles these apparent contradictions. The new Sprinter NGT with bivalent natural-gas drive system epitomises this view: substantially lower exhaust and noise emissions, considerably lower operating costs and a long range combined with the standard-fit drive are just some of the benefits.


    etc, etc. I guess the really important point is that when you actually go to the full version of any of these, the chances of there being real, useful information is almost zero. If anyone wants to see the expansion of any of these, just ask.

  10. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 7:40 pm

    Tash Littlewood of MoTeC is one of the microscopic number of PR people who writes a decent press release. Read her latest and judge for yourself:


    MoTeC makes light work of smart power control.

    MoTeC has just released the first in its range of Power Distribution Modules, the PDM32, weighing in at only 405 grams (0.89 lbs). This compact, lightweight device replaces conventional relays, fuses, timers and circuit breakers to simplify wiring, reduce weight and maximise control over racecar power management.

    The PDM32 supplies electronically switched power to various electrical systems in the vehicle including motors, lights, solenoids and electronic devices such as ECUs and data equipment. It allows for a large start up current and provides multiple conditions for each output, making complex switching operations possible. Full diagnostic information, including output current and error status, can be monitored on a PC or transmitted to a display or logging device.

    It provides 32 outputs, each over-current protected and controlled via a combination of switch inputs, CAN messages and logic functions. In addition to performing simple functions such as flashing indicator lights and controlling pumps and fans, the logic functions can be used to selectively turn off systems during low battery voltage or engine starting to reduce drain on the battery.

    A smaller version with 16 outputs, the PDM16, is coming soon.

    The PDM32 is available now from MoTeC’s worldwide dealer network. Visit for more details and a complete dealer listing.

    MoTeC is a recognised leader in the field of Engine Management and Data Acquisition. Founded in 1987 in Melbourne, Australia, MoTeC now serves a broad international customer base with authorised dealers worldwide and main offices in the UK and USA. MoTeC’s Research Centre in Australia facilitates the development of new technologies for the motorsport and automotive industries.


    Word doc and two jpeg images attached

  11. David Fernandez said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    Julian, I wasn’t questioning your right to criticise poorly written press releases, merely the rather negative view that the blog takes of the PR profession.

  12. Stephen McLardie said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 10:53 pm

    Julian. You are right. Most press releases are poorly put together.

    But your blog was also right on the money about Journalists.

    In the main they are lazy. You said it yourself:

    “Journalists want stories. They want good quality stories achieved with – to be blunt – as little work as possible.”

    Your gripe in this blog seems to be that most PR people don’t give you a press release with 90% of the story already written.

    Seems to me your blog highlights a bigger problem with journalists than it does with PR people

  13. Stephen McLardie said,

    on April 25th, 2008 at 10:55 pm

    ps. I would also suggest that most press releases are not written by a PR professional, but rather some poor junior schmuck in the sales or marketing department with no training in PR or journalism, who is asked to throw something together at the last minute

  14. James said,

    on April 26th, 2008 at 3:12 am

    Want a whole bunch of press releases to knock about? This site is dedicated to publishing genuine manufacturer press releases.

  15. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 26th, 2008 at 8:57 am


    PR people are trying to get positively slanted material about their companies published in the media.

    You would think, therefore, that they would make that material as immediately useable by journalists as possible, wouldn’t you?

    My gripe is that, as clearly stated in my blog, the majority of press releases are simply rubbish – of no interest to anyone and more often than not, not published by anyone. I mean, look at the above samples – how many contain information that any media outlet would bother publishing? Some do; most don’t.

    Re authorship – all press releases list as the contact the head of PR for that company. These people are ostensibly the authors, and are certainly responsible for what is issued. In most cases we’re talking major companies who employ highly paid PR persons to do this work.

    I didn’t bother making the point in the blog, but in the VAST majority of cases, when I contact a PR person to try to get more information, they know nothing more than is contained in the vapid press release , will not source any further information*, and will only rarely give me the direct contacts of persons who actually do know something.

    From my perspective of a technical journalist working in this field for something like 17 years, the majority of PR people in the automotive area are a complete waste of space.

    Judge that comment for yourselves on the quality of press releases they continuously issue….

    (*I should add that they will always SAY that they will source more information, but it either doesn’t happen or if it does happen, ignores the detailed requests made by me i.e. the further information is also worthless.)

  16. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 27th, 2008 at 9:27 am

    A further thought. Over that 17 years I have always worked for non-mainstream media, so perhaps the lack of helpfulness that I have so often found in PR people is simply because they don’t want to waste their time dealing with alternative media.

  17. doctorpat said,

    on April 28th, 2008 at 1:46 pm

    As someone who has spent a few years on the other side of the fence, someone who was providing the data to the marketing and PR departments for release to the outside world, I can tell you a common reason that PR people are reluctant to provide direct contact to the actual engineers and accountants who can provide the details missing from the press release.
    It’s because it would then become apparent that the original data had been squeezed and manipulated beyond all recognition.
    I can think of several times that customers found what appeared to be contradictions in our published information. They somehow ended up contacting the engineers directly, and we soon realized that the published data had nothing whatsoever in common with the information we had originally provided.
    So we cobbled together some sort of kludge answer that kind of provided the real facts, in such a way that we were not blatantly calling our alleged co-workers “retarded lying scoundrels”, but I’m sure that anyone who had gotten that far could read between the lines and work out what we were not saying.

  18. Graeme said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 10:48 am

    As an enduring recipient of the Autospeed publication, I have been bitterly disappointed of late, with the frequent negative overtone displayed toward external media outlets/public relation departments, relating to the field of discussion. I personally have felt that the publication has receded in recent times, due to the bias shown toward your own approach and media style. Ironically I believe that a central aim of the publication is to deliver an unbiased account, in an attempt to open reader’s eyes to all that is going on. Something that I feel could be completed far more effectively through actions rather than words (don’t discuss faults in others work, compose your own work at a higher level).

    Having said all of that this is 2008, we are living in a media rich environment where consumers have access to far broader and more in-depth knowledge than ever before. I feel it would be naïve, given our current environment to take literally any one publications view, and also not read between the lines on occasion (I do not need this spelt out).

    To be perfectly honest, of late content is coming across from an insecure standing, personally or from the publications footing I do not know. This is displayed even down to the comments section that I have taken the time to write in. If a genuine remark is made that is not aligned with your thoughts, persons are shot down, with at times nothing more to back your argument up than “in my seventeen years experience” which I might add, on its own does not account for much.

    Please remove Autospeed from journalism commentary and get back to you roots.

  19. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 11:30 am

    Graeme, this part of AutoSpeed is a blog. A blog.

    One definition: “A blog (an abridgment of the term web log) is a website, usually maintained by an individual, with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video.”

    In a blog I will continue to be opinionated (therefore by definition show bias) and make comment on a range of topics, including “external media outlets/public relation departments”.

    I’ve commented here in the past on political policies, workshop standards, discussion groups, company direction, etc. Why on earth should PR people be somehow held to be beyond reproach?

    I note that no-one (so far) has bothered to actually defend the quality of the press releases that I have cited – as I said earlier, people can read them and make up their own minds as to the standard of the stuff being dished out.

  20. Graeme said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    Julian, I am more than aware of the format of this particular section.
    At no time did I mention that PR personnel should be beyond reproach.

    With regards to the material, it is simply not possible to enrich content with the detail you require in a general release. What you require for your publication, will be something totally different than someone from another format. Also with regards to content, I feel it unrealistic to expect something that meets all required markers, each and every time. Good, bad, indifferent companies need to get their brand out there as many times as possible. Without these releases how would they inform the media (as with your logic, less releases would be likely, due to more in-depth content required)? Different content will appeal to different markets, therefore all being important to release.

    Everyone has quotas to maintain, Autospeed churns out good, bad or indifferent too remember.

  21. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 1:15 pm


    I am glad you wrote all that; most of it supports the points I have been making about PR people and their releases!

    PR people needing to meet quotas of sending out press releases… (“Everyone has quotas to maintain”)

    PR people happy to send out press releases for bad and indifferent companies… (“Good, bad, indifferent companies need to get their brand out there as many times as possible.”)

    The idea that there should certainly not be less press releases of higher quality… [“Without these releases how would they inform the media (as with your logic, less releases would be likely, due to more in-depth content required)”]

    As for AutoSpeed stories being bad or indifferent, I can state this at the time of writing: for all articles that we have published since reader ratings began, we have an average reader rating of 3.23 out of 5 (65 per cent) and an absolute lowest score for any article of 2.1 out of 5 (42 per cent). That scoring includes the reader ratings for republished old articles.

  22. James said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Hands up if you think Graeme works in PR. \o

  23. Graeme said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    Sorry to disappoint James, but I do not, nor ever have worked in PR.

    I just want Autospeed back on track!

  24. Julian Edgar said,

    on April 29th, 2008 at 6:10 pm

    I assume in your comments that you’re talking only about my blog.

    OK, in the last 19 blogs, I’ve covered these topics:

    – The similarity of the manufacturer-released rubbish written about the styling of the VE Commodore in 2006 and the FG Falcon in 2008.

    – Introduced a brilliant book on future car aerodynamics

    – Linked to an eye-opening test of old versus new car crash testing

    – Talked about how quickly technology is changing in ‘green’ cars and the need to keep up with it if making judgements about the relative merits of technologies.

    – Made the point that IMHO the FG Falcon is completely the wrong car for the times

    – Linked to the first road tests of the Tesla electric car, probably the most exciting electric car to be built in 75 years

    – Described a brilliant book about life on Toyota’s production line in the early 1970s, something that is analogous (in a vastly milder sense) to the murky past of the German car makers

    – Criticised a discussion group that had participants commenting on one of my modification articles, mostly in complete ignorance

    – Described how the divorce between the brake and accelerator pedals no longer needs to be the case, and the good reasons for making this one pedal in most driving

    – Talked about the new home workshop I am going to have built

    – Described the perspective I think that readers should take when reading new car tests, both mine and tests from other journalists

    – Talked about some tools that I have bought, some of which are very effective and others which are not

    – Described some of the alternative pedal machines that I have been riding, including some that challenge the traditional perspective of pedal technology as alternatives to cars.

    – Covered in glowing terms what I consider to be a breakthrough family car – safe, cheap and economical

    – Given readers the opportunity to directly comment on a fantastic AutoSpeed story on weighing-up the alternative powertrains of the future

    – Described when technology fails and highway bridges collapse

    – Highlighted a long extract from a book on that rarest of topics, car muffler design

    – Described how my suspension recumbent trike (built in a very popular series of AutoSpeed articles) performed in an environment completely foreign to its test and development.

    – Described how a car climate control system could be used to control a solar energy house

    Graeme, as far as I am concerned, that mix is about as ‘on track’ as AutoSpeed will ever be under my editorship.