Got an email today from

Please find media information at the link below,

issued on behalf of Tina Richards (the facialist who said “no” to Julia Roberts).

My response:

And I’m saying NO to any more emails from you, thanks very much. You clearly have no idea what I write about, and that is a cardinal sin in a PR company.

Which I think sums up my position, really. Perhaps it’s just been the time of year – November/December are typically quiet times in the computing industry – but so far I’d say that none of the features I’ve commissioned or stories I’ve written at The Guardian’s G3 Technology supplement has come from a press release.

The whole balance has shifted compared to just a couple of years ago. Nowadays I read my aggregator for what’s interesting, and get emails from journalists with ideas which I’ll either go for or try to shape into something that will work. PR just hasn’t entered the picture so far. Early days yet, of course, but there’s definitely no room for press releases that are so badly misaimed. It denies attention from something else that might be more deserving.

So I’m not going to read things that are obviously press releases because the possibility of it just being annoying or irrelevant is too great; I’m going to go to my aggregator instead, because I’ve chosen every feed there for its potential interest.