When embattled Government comms director Andy Coulson found himself under the spotlight this week, he decided on a familiar course of action - hide behind a PRO of his own.

On Monday, media outlets were quoting a 'spokesman for Coulson', creating a headache-inducing sort of comms squared. Quite how the spokesman for a spokesman role fits into Eric Pickles' crusade about 'non-jobs' is unknown. Maybe a spokesman for the spokesman for the Government spokesman might shed some light? ...

Elsewhere in Government comms, things are not getting any easier for the Department of Education press office. After the debacle surrounding the announcement of cuts to the schools building programme, it made another press release misstep. An announcement by Michael Gove about new free schools was revised in a second release - the difference? The expunging of a suggestion that further free schools could be 'able to open in 2011'. Flack wonders what could have triggered this policy backtrack in the single minute between 12.37 and 12.38 on Monday? ...

Finally, news reaches Flack of Guardian communication editor Rick Wray's short and not so sweet speech at his leaving do at the Hand & Shears near Smithfield Market last week. He carried off his new Vodafone spokesman role with aplomb by mumbling a few sentences before telling the assembled great and good of the telecoms industry: 'If you try to come down and visit, I'll set the dogs on you.'

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