When I met Butler Cain, he was running the newsroom at Alabama Public Radio. Today he is an associate professor at the University of North Alabama and is chair of the Department of Communications.
Listen and learn principles of journalism for your local podcast.
Mentioned in this episode
“If it bleeds, it leads” is easy and formulaic.
Find a better way: Cover things not covered by local media
Don’t be a one-and-done reporter. Explore stories from multiple angles over multiple episodes.
Find out how issues and policies affect people
Audio requires good writing
The “red ball” exercise
Journalism is never 100% truth (wait, what??)
Journalism needs to get better at explanation and analysis
Even legacy radio and television could use podcasts to share the journalistic process with their audience to rebuild credibility
People cannot be totally objective, but the journalism process should be.
What do to if you’re not sure you fully understand a story
What IS journalism?
Consider these questions:
- Why is this important?
- Why does this need to be heard?
- Why invest your time and effort on this story?
Come up with ideas you want to explore
- Write questions related to that
- Find experts with informed opinions, not just people on the street.
- Realize there are more than just two sides, so cover multiple perspectives.
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Follow Butler Cain on Twitter @ButlerCain
Read Butler’s blog at ButlerCain.com
Links to Resources
The World News Prism: Digital, Social and Interactive Kindle Edition (Amazon affiliate link)
Jonathan Kern’s Sound Reporting: The NPR Guide to Audio Journalism and Production (Amazon affiliate link)
NPR’s Editorial Training site: Hone your craft, on air and online.
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