Thursday, May 31, 2012

reporting - connections and being human

I'm a Communications student in Manitoba, Canada. I study journalism, public relations, advertising and media production (TV and radio).

My journalism instructor is Joanne Kelly, former reporter for Shaw TV Winnipeg. I've always been inspired by the discussions and lectures we have in journalism class. Although I believe the way in which journalism is being told (particularly print media) is dying, I think journalism itself is very much alive. I think there will always be a need for storytelling and always a need to be aware of what's happening in this hectic place we call our world.

In saying this, I think there will always be a need for reporters such as CBC National Foreign Correspondent Nahlah Ayed. My instructor, Kelly, interviewed Ayed this past April about her new book, a memoir called A Thousand Farewells. It's a 15-minute interview, and in those 15 minutes I'm not surprised it ended with me feeling inspired again.

A Thousand Farewells tells the tale of Ayed, a Winnipeg-born girl who's parents decided to move her entire family home to the Middle East when she was just six years old. In the Shaw interview, Ayed describes the shock of moving from "green grass and wide prairie skies to a cramped refugee camp of no windows, concrete corbels, doors with rusted bullet holes and open sewers in the street". She describes it as the biggest culture shock of her life. Ayed says that, as the media, we're so focused on the news itself and not the bits of details that happen in between a story. With her memoir, she attempts to fill in the gaps and paint an entire picture of what's happening in a situation. 

Stories of hard-hitting world issues and stories that are told with the purpose of making a difference are important. Connecting with readers and listeners and your world audience are also important. What I took from Kelly and Ayed's discussion was the importance, as a reporter, to make connections and be human.

With this, I've definitely found a book to start reading! Please take 15 minutes to watch the interview here. Who knows, you might leave feeling a little inspired.

My picked top quotes of the interview:

"A good reporter makes connections with people" - Joanne Kelly

"When we were beaten up, I decided not to talk about it. I had a bloody nose and a few bruises, which was nothing compared to the death of about 100 people right before my eyes" - Nahlah Ayed, on her camera person and her being attacked by a mob in the Middle East.

"I've always said, if you don't know how to put yourself in people's shoes,you have no business being a reporter"- Nahlah Ayed.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

apology & hey advertisers, we get it.

First of all, I apologize to all my followers for not posting here for almost a month! Life has been crazy busy as exams and assignments had to be wrapped up at the end of April, and now I've also started a new summer job.

I'm a media relations intern now for the Winnipeg Goldeyes, an American Association independent baseball league team. I assist with behind-the-scenes PR activity, help out with media scrums and assist in production of Paul Edmonds TSN 1290 radio broadcast during home games, to name a few. I feel like I'm in school everyday (minus bringing home loads of homework) which is a good thing because I'll be able to maintain the skills I've acquired this past school year. But to say the least, I'm loving my new job! Of course it's an adjustment and was nerve-wracking in the beginning, but I'm getting used to the "corporate culture" everyday. It's great.

Because I'll be assisting the Goldeyes with their social media very soon, it's going to be very difficult to keep up with my personal accounts. So please don't forget about me, I haven't completely disappeared! You can follow me on Twitter at @daynarobbie.

Now that I've brought you up to speed, I read something in the news today that relates to the media discussion this blog focuses on! We're keeping things consistent, here.

The story I read was from the Winnipeg Free Press (my go-to news outlet). Everybody, apparently we're one step closer to getting rid of loud, blasting, startling TV ads that come on while you relax watching your favorite show. Advertisers, we get the idea.

I study advertising and PR in school, so I have a level of respect and appreciation for TV ads. Advertisers and businesses have to make money somehow. But I'm happy that, come Sept. 1, we'll no longer have to be startled by the blare of a TV ad. In my opinion, the advertising industry of TV ads doesn't need to change, but the sound level of them could sure use an adjustment. What do you think?

Read the WFP story here.