The next time you receive a when-did-you-stop-beating-your-wife call from a Fairfax or ABC reporter, tell them you are just a little busy and ask that their questions be submitted in writing. Promise you will respond immediately, which is only good manners. Further, advise the reporter that, while you are happy to have your words editted for the dead tree edition, you expect your comments to be published in full on the website, where space is not an issue.
Next, post the questions and your answers on your own parliamentary website, not bothering to wait until the reporter has written his or her story. This will not only ruin whatever dubious scoop the reporter is pushing, it will make them think twice before again trying to stitch you up.
Finally, if you give an interview on camera or if the reporter is simply operating an audio recorder, make your own copy and post that as well.
The key is to respond immediately and without mercy to any mistakes. Do not go cap in hand to the reporter and ask for the record to be corrected. It will not happen, so you need to set things straight -- and to do so right away. Bloggers call this "fisking" and there is no reason why parliamentarians should not do it too.
If you find yourself too busy to follow this prescription, hire someone who can. And if you have a PR person who believes in making nice with reporters, write out their severance cheque and show them the door. The press is your enemy -- yes, even the Murdoch press -- so invest no effort in schmoozing. It will not bring the slightest reward.
Fact is, you are never going to get a fair shake. Today's "expose" of "secret" domain registrations and "Tea Party-style" activism should be all the proof you need.
Oh, and one other thing. When the Abbott government is elected, immediately suspend all government advertising in Old Media outlets. Nobody reads those display ads, anyway, and the charges ultimately pay the salaries of people whose only goal is spread distortions.
Best of luck,