September 28, 2017

How to become a professional in journalism Part 1

Modern media worker, journalist including, sandwiched between uncharted practice and willing to teach him all the new media-trainers and consultants. Little choice: either to learn everything myself by trial and error or trust those who reviewed, streamlined and prepared in a concentrated form to pass on valuable knowledge (but without a guarantee of mastering).

Because current issues of professional orientation, education and training of media in General and journalists in particular. The problem of today’s education is not the lack of useful information, and in its verification and classification. On a personal level is not a question of access to education – is more important than the selection of knowledge and prioritization skills. This April 2015 will be dedicated to a big conference in mass media Institute. We are also interesting practical side of the issue: what it takes to be relevant and popular today?

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Skills of a successful journalist can be divided into two large groups: the shared understanding of things and practical skills. The majority of active contemporary authors have all intuitively know, or potentially know how. You only need to focus, to come to the obtaining and use of skills in a systematic way. It is also useful to personalize knowledge and skills, imagining such an enlightened media productions. To make the image, if not perfect, at contemporary journalist.

In this article, you may, repeat already said and for someone the obvious. The value of the material in the group in different spheres of understanding and navigation through thematic articles. In some cases, parentheses are references to previous issues of the magazine “Journalist” with articles on related topics. So, here are 5 basic directions of development of the modern journalist.

  1. Understanding social communication: how to communicate and understand each other people?

The actual journalist is based on a deep understanding of the processes of human communication.

Linguist and semiologist Ferdinand de Saussure proposed an explanatory model for human language, “the Signified-Signifier-the Sign.” “Signified” is an idea, a concept which should Express the “Meaning” material carrier of this idea/concept, and “Sign” is the sum of the signifier and the signified. Moreover, the sign is already reflected in the result of the perception of the other person.

That is, the Sign should read, if you want to convey the concept to the audience. If people do not know the language in which it conveys the concepts in the form of letters – he does not understand the message, for it is empty characters. The signs can be otherwise perceived if in another culture the same expression means different. For example, white color is perceived in Europe as a public holiday, and in Japan – a symbol of mourning.

In the same vein, we can explain the coexistence of media and content. Distributor (media) and media (content) of the message to make sense when interacting. The third necessary component in this system is the audience that has access to media and are able to assimilate the content.

By themselves, media and content can exist separately, but in other qualities, or only imagine the unrealized potential. A deep understanding of the relations and mechanic of the human language allows to design the space communications and effectively convey meanings in different ways.

  1. Understanding of the essence of journalism: what is your value?

From understanding the essence of social communication is the understanding of the role of the journalist and journalism. It bears repeating that journalism is not identical to the media/media and not identical to the content: if said on TV or in the newspaper wrote is not necessarily journalism. In some detail this question is considered in the article “How has the concept of “journalism” in today’s digital space?”.

If you try to dissect the activities of the journalist, it can be divided “media”, “content” and “journalism”. “Media” is in a broad sense the environment, and in the narrow channel of distribution, distribution. “Content” is a tool, a bearer of the message (message), container of meanings. “Journalism” is a social institution.

Journalism is always a very personal decision, on a basic level needs. No laws, statuses, badges, certificates “the Press” and other attributes of the “media” will not force a person to be sincere, honest and passionate about the idea to make the life around better.

Journalism is a responsible civic position expressed through the media text. The journalist in word and deed helps people and the world around them, making it in the space of mass media. The content and media for a journalist – it’s the same tools convey important meanings, both for the advertiser of dog food, or ideology of a political party. Tools and channels are the same – goals, actions and results impact on society is different.

Your personal qualities and competencies for journalism is more important than your professional skills. Last, you can learn even under duress, but the first can only be promoted consciously.

With this understanding you can build long term, lasting and trusting relationship with the audience. Studies confirm that quality standards are equitable across both traditional and new media.

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  1. Understanding the audience: what really people want?

The audience can study endlessly — there is no limit to perfection. There are only directions: to study the motives, to keep track of the interests, to record activity to measure engagement and so on.

For these purposes there are many different organizations, platforms, and services. The traffic monitor simply using internal statistics (Google Analytics) or external services such as However, it is not as important to measure the activity of the audience, how to explore and predict trends in its behavior.

You need an understanding of how the audience interacts with the content. The skilled journalist knows how to attract audience and to create content. Uses the activity of its readers in the social networks. He realizes the importance of developing such parameter as “loyalty”.

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