Brian Wacker: Words from a (soon to be) J-School grad

Came across Brian’s weblog and noticed this post about j-school and what learning matters:
“What I?m getting for my tuition is, ideally, the same I would have been getting 30 years ago. I?m not here to learn how to use WordPress as much I am here to learn how to write. I?m not here to learn how to use InDesign as much as I am here to learn what makes a good magazine page layout. While the medium may change, the basic elements of educating an intelligent, insightful, talented journalist stay the same. Great research skills. Great writing skills. A dedication to honesty and truth. These are the guiding forces of what made a good journalist 30 years ago, what makes one today and what will make one 30 years from now.

… In fact, I think it is the very change in media ? from radio to television to internet and beyond ? that keeps young people interested in journalism. As the number of media outlets expands, so too will the amount of people willing and capable of being good journalists.”

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  1. Randy says:

    Anyone else note the glaring omission of what is at the heart of the problem with journalism today – and much more so than 30 years ago? Not ONE word about OBJECTIVITY as a journalistic value. Many purveyors of the worst journalistic sins of our times were and are great researchers and great writers, and doubtless see themselves as honest transmitters of truth. Biases and prejudices run deep. Many have to be UN-learned – and the cultivation of onjectivity as well as the recognition of bias are critical elements of the training of a journalist. I recall any number of occasions when great journalists of my acquaintance like Endre Marton, George Gedda, Richard Valeriani, and Peter Lisagor expressed political opinions that surprised the hell out of me. One was tempted to exclaim, “But I never saw anything in your copy/column/stories that suggested that’s what you think of so-and-so” – but only ONCE. The surprise WAS the education – I learned that the true professional does not let his personal opinion or bias show, and that the greats are scrupulous about it. Nowadays, I’m mostly surprised only when bias DOESN’T show.

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