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The Mind of A Journalist and Elements of Journalism CHAPTER ONE

Jocelyn Langford, Jon Hansen, Casey Adams, Courtney Carter, Mallory Siebers

What Journalism Is All About

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZpwrWd mAjw (0:55-1:45)

What is Journalism For?

What is Journalism For?


Information creates democracy Power to do good and inspire people to fight for their freedom journalism helped build a community, it was for citizenship, and democracy For taking back the language from the government

So What is Journalism?
Some suggest that the definition of journalism has been exploded by technology so now anything is seen as journalism.

Journalism is determined by the function news plays in the lives of the people The news media helps us define our communities as well as help us create a common language and knowledge rooted in reality

Identifies a communitys goals, heroes and villains The Primary Purpose of journalism is to provide citizens with the information they need to be free and self governing.

What some reporters had to say about what journalism means: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTqeoCK4uds The news media serve as a watchdog, push people beyond complacency, and offer a voice to the forgotten. I want to give voices to said people who need a voice...people who are powerless. - Yuen Ying Chan, a former reporter for the New York Daily News

Perhaps in the end journalism simply means carrying on and amplifying the conversation of the people themselves. - James Carey

Beware: Defining Journalism can be dangerous. Beware: Defining Journalism can be dangerous.
It makes it resistant to changing with the times

Every generation creates its own journalism

But the purpose of journalism remains the same:

To serve the general welfare by informing the people.

Discussion Question: What does journalism mean to you?

Awareness Instinct
Humans have exchanged a similar mix of news with a consistency throughout history and cultures that makes interest in this news seems inevitable, if not innate.

used to both promote unity in communities as well as instill a consistent message or threat to all that oppose the government

Birth of Journalism
Journalism began in the form of song as minstrels traveled the country (end of middle ages) Seventeenth century- conversations Visitors to bars and coffeehouses in America could write in a book located at the end of the bar

England: two newspapermen, under the pen name Cato, introduced the idea that truth should be a defense against libel whereas the government was saying the exact opposite

Ben Franklin told Pres. Washington that No government ought to be without censors and where the press is free, no one ever will. Bill of Rights was formed

Awareness Instinct

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIr8SUKsn6k

A Free Press in an Electronic Age


If you dont publish it, someone will Technology is turning passive consumers into active participants Google: Countless outlets for any news story

We as journalists need to: get stable points look at things from multiple views Get to the core of matters Come to conclusions in uncertain environments

Journalists no longer decide what the public needs to know, but instead make order out of all the information available. Not interpret or analyze But verify reliable information Order that information for people to effectively grasp

In this era, anyone can be a journalist The professionals become forum leaders

Journalism is now a conversation with the consumer, like it started


Email addresses

The technique is different, but the principles are the same: Verification first

Discussion Question: How does this role of a journalist work? Does it work?

The Journalists Theory of Democracy


We have a free press, yet.... (approximately) 3 out of 10 Americans can name their congressman (Can you?) <1/2 of Americans vote (much fewer than countries without the first amendment) 42% Said they read the daily newspaper and know no more about the outside world Local news ignores the process of governing

Do we actually self govern? Or are we just bystanders?

Walter Lippmanjournalist Democracy is flawed People know the world indirectly (pictures in their head) Pictures come from the media

HOWEVER, Pictures are distorted and incomplete due to the press weakness Public cannot comprehend the truth because of bias, stereotype, inattentiveness, and ignorance Citizens are theater goers who stay only long enough to decide who is the hero and who is the villain

John Dewey- Philosopher Democracy is to allow people to develop to their fullest potential The end not the means Democratic life is so much more than efficient government Its purpose is for human freedom Dont give up on democracy, Improve the skills of the press And educate the public Democracy is the outgrowth of human interaction

This debate is still unresolved. There is still some kind of democracy: Journalists try to decide the angle of a story that is relevant. what the public needs to know which stories to cover They guess at what readers and viewers want to know

The rise of citizen media is addressing the problem of journalists not talking to the public but about them instead. The public is forcing themselves in.

As a result, the journalists who have an agenda, or who cant effectively verify news will be quickly exposed. The interactive relationship between journalists and citizens through websites, blogs, community newspapers and public access TV holds the key to how both citizens and journalists operate.

The Theory of the Interlocking Public


Everyone is interested and even expert in something. The notion that people are simply ignorant, or that other people are interested in everything is a myth. Thus the fact that everyone is an expert in someway is a more realistic description of how people interact with the news.

There are 3 groups in this interlocking public 1. an involved public, 2. an interested public, and 3. The uninterested public. In this model we are all members of all three groups.

The New Challenge


Corporations and

other large organizations


News was becoming a smaller component inside global conglomerates

Big Business Buts In

Corporate and Social Interests


Disney Acquires ABC News -Micheal Eisner Disney doesnt cover Disney -a $23 billion corporation with influence and/or ownership in: x. Sports teams x. ESPN x. The History Channel x. Theme parks and world entertainment x. #1 distributor of manufactured goods in U.S.

Al Jazeera vs. Western coverage of 9/11 - Fox vs. CNN

The Press

an independent institution?
-globalization -less domestic & National news coverage -Social Censoring x. entertainment writers x. Yahoo! News x. Owners interest -First Amendment becomes a

property right

The Lure of Journalism


The Love of Reading and Writing aspiring journalists: have a love affair with the written word have a desire to create something profound and beautiful are voracious readers read for pleasure and knowledge

An Intense Curiosity aspiring journalists: have an insatiable curiosity love to learn new thing every day

A Desire to Contribute the love of reading and writing and an intense curiosity about the world can help drive a person into journalism, but the desire to contribute to society--to right the wrongs and make things better--is often what keeps them there making a difference

The Independence Factor


individual effort, but not absolute independence inhibited by:
Resources Editors marketing departments Public journalism Consultants libel

Being on the Inside


love being the first to know things Symbiotic relationship between the reporter and the source source needs the story to get out reporter needs the source to provide the story

Difficult to remain detached from sources DC reporters are invited to political events, often to be convinced of one side or the other. Veterans understand that reporters must remain neutral and look out for leaks

The Challenges of Going Deeper

to tell a story better and in more detail than it has been told so far

Quizzical Questions
1. T/F Interlocking Public The notion that 2. People go into journalism because:
people are simply ignorant, or that other people are interested in everything, is a myth. A. they love to read B. they love to learn something new every day C. they want to contribute to society D. they love being on the inside E. they love to be challenged F. all of the above

3. Which of the following could pose a new challenge for modern Journalism? A. high school English teachers B. globalization C. big business D. federal regulations E. corporate interests

4. Journalists are usually introverts. T/F 5. What outlets make it possible for anyone to be a journalist?