To help us expand our knowledge in community journalism, the RoathCardiff team spent a day at The Guardian headquarters in London for their Journalism Masterclass course. The 1-day workshop covered open journalism plus current digital methods that are now used in mainstream reporting. Talks covered subjects such as how non-reporters can now photograph and broadcast breaking news as it happens, such as with the plane landing in the Hudson river in New York and the Woolwich murders (citizen journalism). Plus subjects as far back as the Clinton affair which was blogged about in the late nineties.
We learnt how the Guardian openly asks the public to share their reports and stories in the aftermath of events such as the St Jude storms, and how they have created portals for breaking news to be reported effectively to the public. There were also lessons on the proper ways to create video (never ever portrait) and how to build up information online through sources such as land registry sites and companies house.
Throughout the talks of the day, the emphasis on ethical journalism was prominent. Traditional methods of face-to-face interviews, backing up your sources and caring about your writing were drawn upon by every speaker. The comparisons of journalism before and after the internet was a reminder of how much the reporting landscape has changed and how we need to bring multiple sources and integrity to whatever we write.
The talks were a fascinating insight into how journalists are trained in the digital age but also how we, as hyperlocal writers, can improve our news writing for the people of Roath.