So I had a homework assignment which was to explain if this is an exciting time for journalism in my next blog reflection. To be honest, this subject overwhelmed me. As I was thinking and thinking, I decided to ask my good friend and freelancer, Don Champion.
Don and I go back since 2003 (and yes that is a long time) when we were both selected to work in the Student Multimedia Project during the National Association of Black Journalists’s annual convention and we’ve been friends ever since!
Unlike myself, Don has been working as a journalists since the NABJ convention and he has worked for many TV stations and was even a National Correspondent for CBS. So when I was stumped with this assignment, I knew he would be the right person to ask.
“I’d say it’s a good time to be a journalists,” said Champion. “Our country needs our work now more than ever.”
He’s right about that. I know you look at all of the cable news channels and you see a 24-hour news cycle of POTUS and his tweets, which is needed, but it makes us have to find other sources to find news about other issues that are important to the public.
Local news stations sometimes compose their shows that have stories that are only related to their market. I think that is a great idea and it gives the station the opportunity to find more “feel good” stories that are going on in their city.
Going the digital route to find news is starting to be more common. Last year, D.C.-based website Politico.com would post about events the White House would do but didn’t get publicized like sending bills to Congress or signing Presidential Proclamations that were signed without media attention.
Don would go on, “the stories are so plentiful out there. In this world of social media and Internet there are still a lot of stories that don’t get enough attention,” and he’s right. I have so many story ideas that I want to write about, but scared that I may not be taken seriously or that no one cares. He goes on to say that he enjoys digging for stories that aren’t getting covered right now and giving a voice to the voiceless.
But with every upside, there is a downside. “I will say it’s getting HARDER to be a journalists,” Don continues, “wages are going down and newsroom numbers are dwindling.” He’s right about that. Now that I am pursing my dream of being a journalists full-time, I am having to come to grips with “finding the job of my dreams” over “finding the job that will pay all of my bills.”
“So it’s a great time to be a journalists but it’s hard to be a journalists these days.”