Different Types of Journalism

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

So I was thinking recently about all the different types of journalism. There's television; there's radio; there's newspapers; there's online; there's photojournalism.

I thought it might be a good idea to do a quick overview of all the different kinds and some specifics for each.

Broadcast journalism includes all types of journalism in which the news that is being reported is being aired or shown in some way. This obviously includes television, radio, and even podcasts and Youtube newscasts. These all include the use of voice(sound) and/or appearance(visuals) to help enhance the news that is being shown.

Print journalism includes journalism that is only found in a form that you can read, but not watch. This obviously includes newspapers, magazines, and online text publications.

Photojournalism can be utilized by both print and broadcast. It focuses on images that help enhance the news story by displaying the emotions, color, reality.

Within each type of journalism, specifically television, newspapers, and radio, there are different levels: local, national/international. There are various overlaps between these categories, but typically local news stations (like KCCI) or local papers (The Des Moines Register) focus on news that cannot be found anywhere else.
National stations and papers (Fox News, USA Today) focus mostly on news that is important throughout the company, which many times also includes national news.

Nearly all types of journalism are now catering towards online as best they can in order to attract new readers or viewers. However there are still the specifically online publications such as blogs, Youtube videos, and podcasts.

Photo credit: creativecommons.org


Facebook Creating Privacy Issues?

Facebook has decided to give third-party developers and external websites authorization to access users' home addresses and cellphone numbers despite criticism from privacy experts, Facebook users, and even congressmen Edward Markey and Joe Barton.

"Mobile phone numbers and personal addresses, particularly those that can identify teenagers using Facebook, require special protection," said Rep. Edward Markey. "We must ensure that this sensitive information is safeguarded, with clear, distinct permissions so that users know precisely what's in store when they opt to share this data with third parties.

After the congressmen sent a letter to Facebook expressing their concerns over the new functionality, Facebook responded and ultimately reaffirmed it's decision to still allow third parties to request access to users' addresses and phone numbers.

Facebook's plan to open up users' addresses and phone numbers to third-party sites and services is the latest frontier in Facebook's often controversy-filled efforts to encourage users' to be looser in sharing their information.

Privacy experts have warned that even if this new feature included improved notifications and protection for minors, it could still endanger users' personal information and increase their risk of being targeted by scams, spam, and identity thieves.

"People never thought when they were posting this data that it would be accessible to anyone but friends. There's a real mismatch of expectations around that," said Mary Hodder, chairman of the Personal Data Ecosystem Consortium.

Facebook is once again walking the thin line of breaking users' privacy. So, what's your take on Facebook's latest move? Are they officially crossing the line of privacy? Or are they still in the right since Facebook is, in fact, a public site?

I can't help but feel bad for Facebook users because it seems that Facebook's approach really is "Everything on here is public, therefore, you give us anything and it's completely fair game." I am at least happy about Facebook saying they will make an effort to keep users aware of when they could be giving information away and asking for permission.

Photo Credit: digitaltrends.com via Creative Commons


Climbing the Mountain Again

In the media world, the idea of ever-changing is as common as driving to work or school on a daily basis. Most journalists, I assume, would not have imagined having to use Twitter as an outlet for their daily jobs. Having to make transitions in any business can be a tough thing to do, especially when it comes to a job loss.

As a media student, I cringe when I see newspapers not being able to withstand the digital flow. Newspapers are one of the major types of medium that has been around since the 1800’s and now to see it start to fade is troubling for one who enjoys writing this much.

“Goodbye, Colorado.”

This was the headline that stood out on a February 2009 morning in Denver which froze many newspaper people to the core. The first major newspaper in America had died. Many believed that others, such as the San Francisco Chronicle and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, would follow suit and crumble. They did not.

The reason for the fall is money. As Time magazine pointed out in a March 2009 article, Scripps Co. were the ones who were responsible for the avalanche of one Denver newspaper. Even though the paper was seeing an increase in circulation and advertising, those in charge in Cincinnati assumed that "it was the business model's fault."

So what are the journalists who got ran out of the Rocky Mountain News doing now?

Blogger John Temple of Temple Talk called around and asked how others were getting along since the Rocky's fall. Guess what he used to do? Own the paper himself under Scripps's supervision.

In a nutshell, those who are calling somewhere else other than Denver home are doing fine. In fact, most of them are doing well. Some of the emotions ex-Rockies are facing nowadays are appreciation of a job, newfound freedom, determination, and of course, anger and loss looking back.

Media will always be here for us. Granted, some companies may have to wither away now and then, but as long as news succumbs society, there will be a job somewhere, someway waiting for us students to grasp once we receive our diplomas.

Photo Credit: Ed Kohler via Flickr via Creative Commons


WikiLeaks' Technology Groundbreaking?

A recent column over at TechnologyReview.com featured Jason Pontin talking about how WikiLeaks' lasting effects may be different from what many people assume.

Pontin doesn't believe WikiLeaks has a high probability of lasting very long in a world where it exposes powerful governments' secrets, but the new opportunities provided by their "secure drop box" have prompted others to use their methods in increasingly successful ways.

Pontin mentions how other organizations dedicated to leaking information (with less controversial and obstinate stances toward governments) are starting to use the drop box method with success. He believes even mainstream news organizations like Al Jazeera and The New York Times will begin using this method to get a lot more information out there that is relevant.

I would prefer to see more news and information being shared that is not thought up by a cable news network director or paparazzi or to fill up a portion of programming, but rather real news from real places that people wouldn't know about unless it was leaked.

If this drop box method ends up changing a lot of things I can see the job of a journalist in future years being more diverse as he or she seeks out what would be the most important story among thousands of anonymous submissions. That might not be a bad job to have at all.

Photo Credit: Oliver Tacke via Creative Commons


Tuneful Journalism

As we all look into the future and contemplate where we would like to end up in our careers, one branch of journalism that is often overlooked is music journalism.

Like any other current event, social or political issue, or sports story, music is news too. Not only is music news, but there are endless aspects of the business that need to be covered.

The obvious components of the music industry that need to be reported on include awards shows, concert tours, new breakthrough sounds, and album releases. However, there is so much more to the industry.

Aspects of the music world such as new recording techniques, and covering issues regarding the industry itself are often overlooked.

In an article published by the Seattle Weekly the ups and downs of the music industry were portrayed.

Many music journalists can often be overwhelmed with new music to the point where it blurs together. After listening to so much they are not able to form good opinions on each new artist or sound.

As a result of this, it is important for music journalists to listen to each new track, record, or artist with an open mind. If journalists are constantly comparing new music to sounds they have already heard, the content of their writing becomes mostly negative.

Many music journalsits get tired of always critiquing. A main part of a music journalist's job is to listen to, and review new music. It becomes a very difficult job to fairly judge someone else's artistic ability and career work.

Many artists and journalists have expressed how hard interviews can be. In the article in the Seattle Weekly one artist was quoted as saying that they just get fed up with cut and dry interview questions. They made the point that if readers and journalists really care about their art form, they will ask questions that have deeper meaning.

So, as developing journalists, that is a point we need to keep in mind. Always do research before an interview no matter who you are interviewing. The interviewer will be much happier to answer deeper, more personal and relevant questions than questions that don't really matter.

Photo Credit: stuartpilbrow on Flickr via CreativeCommons


What's Next?

Many of us are currently working towards a career in journalism, so what exactly can students do in preparation for entering the real world of journalism?

8 things college journalists should do before they graduate has a great list of ideas to get students started. Here are a few:

1. Blog- A blog shows potential employers one important thing: consistency. Employers will see that you can produce work on a consistent basis, and therefore will be a committed journalist down the road.

2. Get a new wardrobe- Many college students' wardrobe selection is anything but professional or appropriate for the working world. Invest in a professional looking outfit or two, especially if you are going into broadcasting.

3. Clean up your social network profiles- Be sure to delete any poor language or inappropriate photos on your Facebook or Twitter.

Employers often check the profiles of candidates, and anything they see and don't like could make or break a potential employee's chances of getting the job.

4. Talk to your professors- Professors often have connections to important people or jobs in the journalism business. Professors also make great references to use on resumes.

5. Create a portfolio- Gather together what you feel is the best work of your college career in journalism.

This could be anything dealing with internships or even stories featured in the campus newspaper. The portfolio will help in identifying your strengths and skills.

To check out the rest of the tips, click on this link. Photo Credit: Creative Commons


Four Basic Facts to an Interview

When conducting an interview every beginning journalist asks the question: What do I need to know? There are four basic facts that every journalist needs to know prior to their first actual interview.

1. Have the right tools ready for the interview.
The tools that every journalist needs for an interview are a notebook and a recorder. A lot of journalists will say that it is a debate to which tool you'll need, but having both is ideal. It is very easy to start your recorder, hold it, and then throughout the interview take notes. This way you will have a back up plan if one of the methods fails, and you can be sure to get the story your source is conveying.

2. Make sure you are asking the right questions.
Each interview is different from the next. You aren't going to ask Micheal Jordan the same questions as Professor Steffen when you are interviewing them about the upcoming March Madness. This may require a little research prior to the interview, but will allow you to prepare questions for your upcoming interview.

3. Take great notes.
When interviewing you aren't able to ask your source to slow down, quit talking, or to repeat their last quote. Therefore you will need to learn how to take quick notes. This may require some practice. My suggestion is to watch some clips on YouTube, but try to take notes on the clips why watching. After taking those notes re-watch the clip and see how well you did.

4. Choose the best quotes.
The quotes are the heart of the story. As a reporter you will try to take notes of as many quotes as possible, but when writing you will not want to include every quote from the interview. Compare the quotes from your interview to your lead, and then decide which are most relevant to your lead. Those quotes with the most relevance are what you should include in your story.

Interviews are much easier then beginning journalists think. Just relax and remember these four basic facts. Then you will produce a great interview, which in turn will produce a great story.

Photo Credit: scragz, Flickr


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