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Reporting & Editing / Desired Qualities Of a Reporter

A reporter is a person who gathers information and writes about it. A reporter is a type of journalist who researches and presents information in the Mass Media. A reporter is a person who writes news stories for a newspaper, magazine, etc. and also tells news on the Radio and Television. Reporters gather their information in a variety of ways including tips, press releases and witness events. They perform research through interviews, public records, and other sources. The information gathering part of the job is sometimes called “ reporting” as distinct from the production part of the job.

  1. Nose for news

The nose of the news is the most important quality for professional reporters. The good reporters must have to have good news hunting capacity. They must be careful to find out what is strange and unique to many people. Even a tiny matter can be big scandals news if a good reporter really tries to dig out the roots. Good reporters should have the ability to disseminate the good news.

2. Curiosity, Alertness, and Impartiality

Good reporters must be curious. They enjoy reading and appreciate the details. They are always alert to all probable news, news sources and news sense. They are quick to reach the destination, where important news can be available. They are equally critical to inspect and evaluate all related sides of the news story.

3. Intelligence and Courage

Good reporters must be intelligent and courageous. Courage helps them to develop a skin to deflect the inevitable criticism. They must write something that may hurt someone’s prestige but not the ethics of the journalism. Intelligence is also the most important attribute a reporter could have. Similarly, courage is necessary to stand corrected, courage to take criticism, courage to grow with the experiences, courage to accept what you don’t understand.

4. Language expertise

Good reporter should learn to communicate idea in correct and effective language. They should write in simple, direct pose without using complicated sentences. A good reporter should report in such a way that the targeted audience can understand. Otherwise, his news will not make any sense. We know that a good student is a half journalist. He has the sense of journalistic presentation. So, a reporter must be a language expert.

5. Handling Media equipment

The Professional reporters must know how to operate Dictaphone, digital movie camera, mobile and satellite phones, essential computer programming like the word, excel, power-point, page maker, Photoshop, Dreamweaver etc. He must have knowledge of Tamil/English typing skills, knowledge to operate email and the internet etc.

6. Faithfulness and Neutrality

The Report must be free from biased information. The information provided in the report must be reliable and valid. False, invalid and biased information are supposed to hamper the decision .

7. Knowledge of Structure and Presentation

How to write down all relevant and necessary information maintaining a proper structure should be known to a good reporter. He must know how to present the facts and information in a simple but effective way. So, Knowledge of structure and presentation are necessary qualities to be possessed by a reporter.

8. Patience

Making a good and perfect report is a complicated task. It may need time and labor. A good reporter should have such patience for completing the task properly and timely.

9. Quality education

To become a good reporter they must complete their graduation in Journalism as the major subject. Otherwise, they have to get some training course on Journalism. They must be quick in writing down the facts.

10. Good Health

Good health is the another common quality of all the reporters. Sometimes the Reporters have to wait long to get the news. They also don’t get time to sleep, sometimes. So, they must be careful to maintain their health.

11. Stress Management

Today, stress is a big problem to many people. Reporters go and meet different people to interact, so sometimes they themselves may lose their temper. Sometimes they may lose their public relations, audience and news source. The reporter should speak politely. They should be patient and contingent to handle the situation.

12. Punctuality

The reporters must be punctual as the media house itself is a timely organization. Reporters must meet the deadline to publish or broadcast the news. Otherwise, they will lose the important news. The value of news may remain no more if the suitable chance is missed. Reporters must be like the needle of the watch, it must run with the time likewise, the reporters should be able to report on time .

13. Firm Determination

A firm determination is a basic factor for the news reporter. News media always run with first and foremost basis. If the reporter loses a news, not only the reporter but the media organization will go behind in the competition market. Reporters should not rest until they find the news completely.

14. Discipline

Discipline is one of the major ornaments of the reporters. They should not forget their goal of being the successful reporter. They must go anywhere at any time to collect important news. Therefore, self-discipline is very important to control and guide them to the right path of reporting.

15. Sincerity

Reporters should be sincere in each and every task of reporting .They should do what the journalistic ethics allow them to do and don’t do something that they promised to avoid.

16. Credibility

Credibility is something that every good reporter should have. In other words, a reporter must exhibit characters and behaviors that make him or her trustable person in the society.

17. Experience and Efficiency

A person who is experienced must be efficient also. A reporter endowed with such two qualities can perform his reporting with quality and standard.

Filed by MUTHIVEERANAN.S, (22MMC015) with inputs from DR. Jayaprakash. CR

2 thoughts on “Reporting & Editing / Desired Qualities Of a Reporter

  1. Ethical guidelines: According to the code of ethics of the Society of Professional Journalists,”Seek truth and report it. Test the accuracy of information from all sources and exercise care to avoid inadvertent error.
    Deliberate distortion is never permissible.”

  2. Journalist-Reader Comparisons

    In the final area of newspaper readership research, journalist-reader comparisons, a group of journalists are questioned about a certain topic, and their answers are compared to those of their readers to see whether there is any correspondence between the two groups. Bogart (1989) presented two examples of such research. In one study, a group of several hundred editors was asked to rate 23 attributes of a high-quality newspaper. The editors ranked “high ratio of staff- written copy to wire service copy” first, “high amount of non-advertising content” second, and “high ratio of news interpretations… to spot news reports”.

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