Reflection of Interviewing and Secondary Sources.

On the 21st of December, the Intro to Digital Journalism workshop centered on the group being introduced a two new aspects of journalism; these were Interviewing and Secondary Sources. The idea of this was to show us what exactly is expected of us in the professional world of Photojournalism when it comes to interviewing and how to avoid making a bad impression. We were also shown what kind of equipment we could use in interviewing situations which included a telephone recorder for landline interviews, programs such as “Skype” for interviews over the internet that can be recorded and even phones and voice recorders for the typical face-to-face interviews that a photojournalist encounters. Technical tips that we were told also included testing of our equipment and positioning in a quiet location. Along with this, we were told that preparation is a key aspect to interviewing; this includes doing research of the subject and specialism of the interviewee and avoiding basic questions that can be verified through research. Also to get the human story from the interviewing which shows their thoughts and feelings on the subject matter, instead of receiving automated answers in advance. I feel that these tips were relevant and thoughtful, as they showed us the basic objectives which need to be obtained when producing a good and informative interview.

The second part of this workshop consisted of the group being introduced to the idea of secondary sources. A secondary source is an article, document or report that uses source material from another article, this usually includes quotes from magazines and newspapers, information from blogs or online sources or material from social media. They are usually used in a similar way to primary sources, an example of this would be the following:

“Lindsay Lohan has been signed up for a role in Christopher Nolan’s next Batman movie, according to Entertainment Online.”

It is usually seen as a springboard for popular opinion, which is lead by the readers of the article. However, there are rules to using secondary sources that a journalist must abide to. These include respect of copyright and rules of fairdealing, attributing sources correctly, linking back to the original source in being written for online use and not re-writing quotes that are taken out of context.

I found the second part of the workshop to be extremely insightful as I had not known fully what were the rules and regulations that come with secondary sources. It opened my eyes to how careful a journalist must be when using this kind of source in an article along with obtaining the professionalism that is required when conducting an interview.

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