KUCHING: Journalists are urged to be efficient in sourcing for news instead of being confined to tasks and assignments given. Former journalist Syaril A. Kadir pointed out that a good journalist is dedicated and passionate about his or her job.
“Journalists are special individuals who shoulder great responsibilities in disseminating information to the public.
“As such, they are often dedicated and passionate in doing their job because they are driven to be informants of accurate and factual news,” he said during a crime reporting and writing seminar here on Yesterday (Sept 15).
Syaril stated that it was important for journalists to look for news on their own initiative instead of merely depending on assignments or tasks given by their chief reporter or editor.
“The current challenging world of journalism requires young journalists to be more agile in ‘sniffing out news’ than the public.”
“Many young journalists in the country are a bit behind in ‘sniffing out news’, especially when it comes to issues that go viral on social media.
“The print media industry has been shrinking due to the challenges of the development of social media technology, moreover netizens are now increasingly delivering news compared to journalists.
“This is one of the challenges for young journalists because they are not only competing with experienced journalists but also competing with people who are more efficient at ‘sniffing out news’.”
Expressing concern about the issue, he called on young journalists to be more proactive, creative and committed in carrying out assignments.
“Sometimes, the news presented by netizens are 10 times more interesting than journalists even though they have not received professional training in the field of writing.
“Although netizens don’t need to wait for the confirmation of facts, for example from the police, what is important is their more creative way of writing.
“This is because they know what can attract people to read their writing. “This problem needs to be dealt with immediately otherwise it is not impossible that one day netizens’ writings will be preferred over journalists’ and it will be sadder if journalists’ writings are considered irrelevant.”
At the same time, he said editors played an important role in nurturing the qualities of their reporters. “Tasks or assignments are a good tool to help reporters hone their writing skills.”
Meanwhile, Centexs Commercial general manager Shahren Yusri said writing seminars were a good platform for journalists to learn and get exposure from seniors in the industry.
The award-winning former journalist pointed out that the writing seminar on crime reporting provided insight into the challenges of investigative and crime reporting.
“The purpose of the seminar is to share with young journalists on what it is like to be a crime reporter. There are many challenges, and journalists who specialise in this must be willing to face those challenges.”
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