Specialist reporting: doing the rounds

Tynan, Liz (2015) Specialist reporting: doing the rounds. In: Bainbridge, Jason, Goc, Nicola, and Tynan, Liz, (eds.) Media and Journalism: new approaches to theory and practice. Oxford University Press, Melbourne, VIC, Australia, pp. 351-364.

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Abstract

Young journalists entering the profession are wise to keep their options open and gain an overview, generally through a cadetship, of what reporting can offer. However, there usually comes a time when you will be ready to work at a deeper level than is possible through general reporting. The general reporter quickly and efficiently has to cover a wide range of breaking stories, from a cat up a tree to a local government resolution to a robot landing on Mars. By contrast, a specialist reporter narrows the focus to a particular field and adds depth. Reporters do not always have a say in exactly which speciality comes their way; indeed, they may arrive at work one day to find they are the new court reporter and are due at a rape trial in 20 minutes. (Part of the fun of a career in journalism is its unpredictability.) Also, in many cases reporters, as part of their training, are assigned to a succession of rounds to gain specialist knowledge in each. Eventually, many reporters settle in one particular area, building their expertise and becoming increasingly adept at spotting stories on the horizon in their field. Many media outlets capitalise on the knowledge bases of their roundspeople and cultivate an image of authority and expertise in areas of greatest interest to their audiences. Media outlets value roundspeople who have made a name for themselves in their specialities and have developed great insight and competence. Roundspeople tend to be more autonomous than general reporters and have greater capacity to drive the news agenda, rather than simply responding to daily events. The most useful roundspeople will be alert to breaking news, will recognise new developments and will appreciate the complexity of these developments when they arrive.

Item ID: 42179
Item Type: Book Chapter (Teaching Material)
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The previous edition of this chapter was published as follows and can be accessed using the link in the Related URLs field:

Tynan, Liz (2011) Specialist reporting: doing the rounds. In: Bainbridge, Jason, Goc, Nicola, and Tynan, Liz, (eds.) Media and Journalism: new approaches to theory and practice. Oxford University Press, Melbourne, VIC, Australia, pp. 284-307.

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ISBN: 978-0-19-558801-9
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2016 03:18
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2001 Communication and Media Studies > 200199 Communication and Media Studies not elsewhere classified @ 50%
19 STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING > 1903 Journalism and Professional Writing > 190399 Journalism and Professional Writing not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 89 INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION SERVICES > 8904 Media Services > 890499 Media Services not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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