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Why is journalism important?

Ever since I was in the 6th grade ive wanted to become a Journalist. I have a strong passion for informing, researching and helping the commuity as best as I can. But, I have also realized that there is barely a demand for journalists. And anytime I express to anyone that this is my future they point out the idea that " there's no money in that ya' know?" . I believe that there will always be a need for informtion. I just want to get a better undestanding beyond informing. #journalism #communications #broadcast-journalism #online-journalism #science-journalism #mass-communications

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Michael’s Answer

I want to speak specifically to:


"And anytime I express to anyone that this is my future they point out the idea that, 'there's no money in that ya' know?'"


This simply isn't the point. Journalism is not relegated solely to reporting and writing of articles. Journalism is also having conversational interviews. Look at people like Terry Gross, Katie Couric, Jessie Thorn (listen to Podcast: The Turnaround), Errol Morris, and comedian Marc Maron. These people make a wide-array of incomes, but have become widely known and found methods to create all sorts of revenue streams for themselves. So, dismiss those thoughts, and know that if you have a passion for something, you can find a way to make a good living doing it.

Thank you comment icon Your answer is great Michael, thanks so much for sharing your expertise! At this moment there are more than 800 unanswered questions so I wanted to encourage you to keep going! So many students will benefit tremendously from hearing from you. Keep up the great work! Jordan Rivera, Admin COACH
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Brian P. D.’s Answer

Journalism is extremely important because it provides a valuable service to the public. Journalists serve their communities by gathering and sharing useful information, especially when other people are too busy to find the information for themselves but still need it for various aspects of their lives.


Working as a newspaper reporter and editor, I saw myself as the eyes and ears for people in the community who were too busy with their jobs or other activities in their daily lives to be able to attend all the necessary events or keep close watch on the government, companies or other organizations and individuals whose actions would affect them, whether positively or negatively.


As a reporter, I was there at the city council or school board meetings or other civic events to let the readers know what decisions or actions had occurred that might impact their lives. The same thing for emergency events - journalists can let the public know whether anyone was hurt in a fire or what roads have been shut down due to an accident or what precautions to take for an expected storm, etc.


The country and, in fact, the whole world needs journalists who are committed to providing the public with facts and valuable information that will help the people who read and view their stories use that information in ways that can make their own lives and communities better.


On top of that, the personal reward - beyond knowing that you helped other people through your work - is that almost every day is new and different for a journalist. New story topics to research, different people to talk to, different places to visit. There will be dull days when it seems like nothing is happening, but it can also be very exciting. I have met famous people from politicians to actors to scientists (including the guy who invented the World Wide Web: Tim Berners-Lee.) I have covered concerts and elections and criminal trials, gone inside a nuclear reactor (before it was turned on), and been caught in a giant protest that became a riot (FYI, tear gas is very painful.) As a journalist, you are expected to go where important things are happening, and that is always interesting.


And you will be amazed at how much you will LEARN about so many different things while working as a journalist, regardless of the size of your town or the company for which you work.


While some journalists earn a very good living, journalism in itself is not about making money. It is a means to help people enrich and maintain their lives and communities. If your focus is on making a huge paycheck, you should probably find a different job. But if you want an extremely interesting way to help make the world a better place (and sometimes have a lot of fun doing it) then journalism could be a good career option for you.

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