The News Apprentices — The truth tellers of tomorrow’s news today.
Royal Television Society Television News Juror and Senior Lecturer David Dunkley Gyimah reports.
2016’s verdict? Brexit and the US Presidential race’s fall out from broadcast journalism? Bit of a mess, really!
How do you create the next generation of Mencken professionals who will serve the public good, to ‘Comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable’. Comprehend values - what’s right and wrong and convey their message in a 20 minute live news bulletin.
They had a job to do. And not being prepared wasn’t acceptable. That’s how they might retell their story. On one of the busiest domestic news day in London this month their task read:
Put together a 20 minute news bulletin from scratch after 8 days contact of professional tuition. You will focus largely on domestic issues and have about three to four to the first broadcast at 12.30, and then another at 3.30. The distance between where you’ll work and inner London, will take you an hour plus of time, so be aware of how ambitious you’d like to be.
The sheer nature of the job yields different pressures; time, resources, a panoramic vision and collaborative work ethic against a clock. That evening the proto broadcast journalists were asked to reflect on their experience, in 1 minute vlogs. Their 3.30 broadcast can be found below.
Skills you need as an editor:
* firmness and calmness, and good judgement.
* Integrity, and the ability to react swiftly to events
24 hours after her final broadcast as news editor, Carolina finds a place to relax and reflect on her role as editor. She’s joined by by Evie, who lets mom know, via skype, how proud she is of her team and her own individual efforts.
THE STUDIO TEAM
Floor Manager Romana. Some of the skills needed include:
* ensuring the transmission studio is running efficiently and productively.
* Risk assessing everything that could go wrong.
News presenters/journalist, Fan and Bria. Some of the core skills needed include:
* Calmness under pressure.
* Focus, and reading an autocue.
THE REPORTING TEAM
Reporters and videojournalists, Marc, Shiksha, Minghao, Coralie, Klaudia. Some of the core skills needed include:
* Ability to turn a story around from raw unconnected data.
* Technical skills in camera and editing, as well as within the story construct.
And here’s their broadcast below. Couple of things that they had no control over, the intro and the green lining effect from the green screen, which we’re hoping to correct.
H. L Mencken’s ideals serve broadcast journalism well at a time when PR often masquerades as the protector of values and truth. The legacy of this news day embodies stories that are as much about the world, as it is about themselves.
After posting this story on the ONA ( Online News Association) Facebook group site, I’m grateful for the feedback from Annie Sugar…
The newsroom is delivered by David and Emma, both former BBC professionals. Dr David Dunkley Gyimah currently leads the television programme and is the course leader for Digital Interactive Storytelling LAB. He has almost thirty years in the industry working for the likes of Newsnight, Channel 4 News, Channel One and WTN. He’s a juror for the UK’s RTS.