Monday, 20 September 2010

My hopes, dreams and ambitions for journalism

Today I’m taking my first steps towards a new career – something I really should have done quite a long time ago in fact – with my first evening of lectures at City University for an MA in Political Journalism.

The summer has given me plenty of time to read around my subject and I feel that as a new student, I’m already developing a worthy critique in my head of today’s journalism and its strengths, opportunities and dynamism, but also its weaknesses, frustrations and, in some cases, lazy and shoddy misreporting. The excellent Flat Earth News by Nick Davies has been a good starting point and I’d highly recommend it to anyone who wants to get a better idea of why journalism isn’t working as it should. And it should work better, because there’s an awful lot going on out there which needs to be taken note of by journalists and which is in danger of slipping away from public consciousness.

So why am I doing this? For the last six years, since my undergraduate degree, I have, in the main, been working in various civil service and public sector communications roles which, although they’ve developed my basic skills in writing good copy and finding stories, I’ve never been responsible in that time for any public or externally facing communication. My interests have always been more around speaking to a wider audience and that passion for the drama of politics and a long desired professional aspiration to journalism have never once waned. Right now seemed an opportune moment to embark on a new career once it became clear that British politics was experiencing a moderate earthquake – of which I’m sure the aftershocks will be felt for some time. A tired, chaotic government has been swept from power, the two-party system is on the verge of being dismantled, the Liberal Democrats are in government and there’s a wave of unpredictability washing through public life which makes things constantly fascinating for the observer of the British political scene.

So, I’m hoping that in order to help make sense of this brave new world, this Masters will help nurture a strong interest in good quality, investigative journalism that is – dare I say it – ethical, and that I can find a new career in helping to peel off what sometimes seems like increasing layers on, and barriers to the machinery of government. I’m not pretending to speak from some pious lectern on what’s wrong with the world – either in politics or in journalism itself – but I want to be able to do things my way, through a prism of values which might seem lofty or impractical – but hopefully true to myself and with independent, rigorous thought and research.

I am an optimist and an idealist by nature and I hope that, if you were to ask me, in five years time ‘where have your ideals and principles gone?’, you won’t witness my detached soul scuttling off down the road to the world of sensationalist celebrity gossip and the sort of pseudo-journalism I don’t think I’ll ever be interested in – let alone be any good at!

Keep following me on this blog, which, I’m advised, needs to be updated at least two or three times a week. I’ve had a blog since 2007 and I don’t think I’ve ever got anywhere near close to that sort of regularity of posting, but hope that over the next year at least, I can promise some occasionally interesting, insightful and thought-provoking articles. And, if you’re a potential future employer or you run a political or news website and you like what you read, please do get in touch.

So, pull up a chair and we’ll have a nice cup of tea as we put the world to rights.


Anonymous said...

top [url=]casino[/url] hinder the latest [url=]las vegas casino[/url] manumitted no store perk at the chief [url=]liberated gratuity casino

Anonymous said...

We [url=]casinos[/url] be subjected to a ample library of totally unconditional casino games in regard to you to play sensibly here in your browser. Whether you want to practice a table recreation scenario or scarcely attempt exposed a occasional modern slots first playing in the direction of genuine in clover, we be undergoing you covered. These are the claim still and all games that you can play at veritable online casinos and you can join in them all in requital for free.

Share this