A to Z Challenge - R for Record, on and off

Theme - Journalism jargons
When a person, who speaks to a reporter, is willing to be quoted by name, then it can be said, "the person is on record", otherwise "off record".

When a quote or attribution is "on record", it carries more credibility, than when it's "off record".

Whether a person is willing to come on record or not depends on who the person is and what is spoken. A person might not be willing to come on record if she is talking about something sensitive and if she fears that disclosure of name might boomerang on her.

Well-known and reputed reporters are generally unwilling to use anonymous quotes. They do so only when the subject is of importance and when they believe their sources are credible.


Nowadays, it is very easy to record a face-to-face conversation or a phone conversation. It's wrong to record conversations without the speaker's permission. It's always better to check if the speaker is fine with the conversation being recorded. Because the person might want to speak off record.

In very rare cases, investigative journalists go undercover, and record (either video or audio) conversations. They do so only when the issue is of public importance.

(This post is a part of the "Blogging from A to Z Challenge April 2019".)

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