Can an item a public official is wearing be declared off the record for purposes of a news interview? I think not.
Modern Healthcare reporter Darius Tahir recently interviewed Dr. Karen DeSalvo, HHS' national coordinator for health information technology. She expressed discomfort with having it mentioned that she was wearing a personal fitness data tracker produced by a particular manufacturer. Her media handler who was present for the interview suggested to our reporter what language he should use in describing the device.