Since the invention of language, we've always been needing someone to tell us what is going on in our community, towns, and world. And I believe that this hasn't changed. Sure, we are moving away from print newspapers (although I firmly believe that small, local newspapers are still a vital part of their communities or should be because bigger news stations aren't going to tell the smaller stories) to a digital age, we still need journalists. Or at least someone to tell you everything you wanted to know and didn't want to know.
It's common knowledge that many people distrust the media at this point, especially anything that contradicts their viewpoints, but instead of disparaging on the news, I think we as a whole need to take the time to think about not only what media we consume and why, but also the people who produce it.
I'm probably biased myself as a journalism student, but I would like to take the time to defend the people who produce news and why we should take the time to thank and support them.
1. A good journalist tries to tell the news as unbiased as possible.
Of course, this isn't always possible, and whenever we read news we should take time to think about the biases of the journalist, news organization, and our own, but a good journalist will try to tell the news as truthfully as possible and from all sides. We should thank and support these people.
2. A journalist's job is never done.
Journalists are the people who get that call at 2 a.m. that a building is on fire or that there is something they need to cover right now. We're basically on call all the time, and so even when we go home at the end of our day, we might have to work on a story outside of our normal working hours.
3. We inform you about the hard and happy things.
Although that video of a puppy playing with a cat might not be hard-hitting journalism, and sometimes we fail to report on things we should, we're not purfect and that video of the puppy and cat might make someone's day better. So you're welcome for all the fluff pieces that make you smile, we tried to find something to not only fill our pages and segments, but something a little happy.
4. We train in and experiment with all sorts of medium.
Journalism comes in many forms now. Snap stories, Facebook, Twitter updates, Instagram stories, radio, podcasts, magazines, blogs, journals, photography, video, paper, digital, charts, graphs, etc. It's important to get you news that matters so we train and come up with new ways to get it to you. We want to be there for you when you need us, we want to keep you informed.
5. At the end of the day, great journalism is about you.
We report news because we care about people, because its a way of giving back to the community. Being a journalist is hard work and sometimes dangerous, but knowing that we're helping to connect you to other people is what makes it worth it at the end of the day. We want to help you get through your day knowing what you need to know, and make it as seamless as possible. We want to inform you, inspire you, and motivate you. Journalism is about people, not about the journalist.
So when you see a journalist, or write to the editors of a news organization, just keep in mind that they are there for you and want to help make a difference. So take the time to thank them.