It's been an interesting path and at times painful. I was in a meeting a couple of weeks ago and the host called me out - wanted me to say who I was and who I represented . What could I say? This site is my scratch pad and without it I've found myself less useful. I write - I pray - I hope and mainly I say I which is totally unacceptable while documenting history for the public.
Years ago I started down this path. My primary interest was media politics. I studied for years; met with every local reporter and accrued a good sense of where everyone was coming from. Next, I wrote. When I saw imbalance - gaps - whatever was totally ignored I was there. I've used video, sound and at times even documented other members of the media covering events.
Here's where I'm at now.
Freelancing for the radio station has been a great asset. Greg Brock and Sally Kaucher have a lot of experience and a good feel for hard news. The radio station also gives me access to great equipment; which I use to get a deep story. I take a 10 second sound bite and pop out a news Mc-Nugget (Kaucher's term) then I write - here. After that I go back and write the story, listen to the other 29 minutes and 50 seconds, dot my I's cross my t's. The free-flow is crucial to me. Together they work well, but this last week has been tough.
From where I stand these work well together. People use different mediums for different reasons. The radio for people who want tid-bits. An entire 1/2 hour television newscast contains the text of approximately one sheet of newspaper (Andrew Cline's Observation. I think people know this and I think they work well together. The newspaper may be the most important. It goes into greater details forces the whole story to be told. Craig Donze and Kurt Lewis have been great as well. They give a lot of leverage and have an interest in both fair reporting and give a lot of leverage to the editorial staff.
Back to the meeting - I stumble...he calls me out and I don't know what to say, because I'm not their for the newspaper, not for the radio, I'm there because I believe if no one is there a generation may be doomed - my daughter's. I'm there for me- I'm on a mission from....and I strive to do the best job I can for the people I work for because that is who I want to be. I do what many people do when put on the spot. I made a joke and the response I got was just short of vicious.
We forget something that I've been thinking about a lot lately. George Washington was convinced through a journalist that America needed to be free from imperialist rule. One guy, not a corporate slave, felt compelled to share what he thought was just common sense. It put an empire in check. This is a more competitive industry than I had imagined. But remember it wasn't some schmuck with a pay check - It wasn't some government official who was peeved because a writer didn't follow his party line - It wasn't a press release. It was someone who had the courage to speak the truth when everything was on the line. Later, the right to a free press was written into the constitution. They weren't talking about a company. They were talking about man's natural right to publish his thoughts. The original revolution wasn't televised. It was about the right to be self-governed and the only way this can possibly happen is if unbiased public communication ensues. I can't think of a better argument for collaboration, but if you want to know why I'm there....this is why.