Sorry, I didn't mean to be on the record. My bad.

Sometimes interviews are on the record, sometimes they’re not. But what happens when a company’s PR rep changes their mind at the end of an interview? Something like this, courtesy of State Impact New Hampshire.

Q: So for my post, can you tell me a little bit about GMO?

A: Sure.  It’s a $100 billion institutional money management firm.

Q: Do they only invest in land, or do they have a wider portfolio?

A: They invest in a variety of different things.

Q: Great.  Thank you. [about to hang up]

A: I’d rather not be quoted on any of this.

Q: Wait…what?  You don’t want to be quoted declining to comment or describing the company?

A: No.

Q: But you’re the PR guy!  You know you’re on record when you talk to the media.  Are you seriously asking me not to quote you declining to comment?

A: We’re just declining to comment.

Q: Seriously, what’s with the cloak-and-dagger?  This is all pretty straight-forward.

A: It’s not cloak-and-dagger.  We’re just declining to comment.  Declining to comment is just declining to comment.

Q: I’m going to quote you on what you said.

A: Ok.  Let me know if I can help you any more.

Q: (Laughing) I would, but I doubt you could go on the record declining to answer my questions.

A: (Laughing)…Thanks!  Click.