Is Journalism the only way to cover stories?

  • What is the difference between:
    • Journalism
    • Documentary
    • Public Relations
    • Corporate Communications
    • Advertising
    • Advocacy Journalism

So many who are in the communications profession didn’t come through a communications degree program. Many are self-taught and in that process never really had someone give them a good understanding of the different roles there are in professional communications.

Alison and Donnie Smith are interviewed by television reporter Mark Strassman. They are members of Calvary Baptist Church of Wartburg.

When a reporter for the national news shows up when a community has been hit by a tornado, this is a news coverage. It is journalism.

Photo By:Stanley Leary

When I took this photo of a hymnal with it opened to the song “I feel the Need of a Mother’s Prayer”, I didn’t put the book there and turn to a particular page. I took it as I found it. That is critical in journalism. It is extremely important in journalism that you report the facts and don’t editorialize or create something or add to it.

Lukas & Nate interview Scott Brock, missionary to Trinidad [NIKON Z 6, 24.0-105.0 mm f/4.0, ISO 9000, Ä/4, 1/250, Focal Length = 35]

When we were doing a Public Relations package for missionaries in Trinidad, they didn’t just find the people where they were and capture it. They interviewed them and even staged parts of their coverage. This was their “Public Relations/Advertising/Marketing” package they did.

Here the purpose is different. In PR/Marketing you want a clear message and you want to get rid of any distractions. You even help the characters phrase their words to tell their stories. In journalism you just ask you questions and edit to the key phrases they say to tell their story. In PR/Marketing you realize that the way someone phrased something often is ineffective. You clarify with them if the way you are saying something is accurate and if it is you ask them to say it this way instead.

If you go with a communications team to do a story, what is your role with the team?

One thing that many team members don’t realize – everyone on that team is responsible for the whole story. The reason is if you don’t understand the whole story you really are not going to be effective in your role.

You also know that when you are on a team, that you must talk with and communicate with the other team members. You need open and honest communication.

The teams that produce the award winning content are usually the teams that have the best communication amongst the team members throughout the process.

Dining Rooms shut down during the Coronavirus outbreak. Paul Joubert’s restaurant Roswell Corners FSU is on their third day of the dining room closed. They have run about 175 cars during their lunch run. Dining Rooms shut down during the Coronavirus outbreak. [NIKON Z 6, 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/60, ƒ/5.3, (35mm = 98)]

During a stock shoot I did for Chick-fil-A I didn’t set up the photos, but I did use strobes to make the lighting look better. A purest would say I am manipulating the situation.

For years I never used flashes all that much, but when I was in the dark room I was burning and dodging. What that means is I was trying to do what I could have been doing with lights. Making the subject brighter and the stuff that I wanted darker by not putting light on it.

White Oaks FSR 2000th Store Grand Opening

Often I do photos where the food is stylized. This isn’t just as you would find the sandwich. It was never wrapped so as to not squish the bun.

This is where the scene is manipulated. We do this all the time in PR/Marketing. In journalism you might have to blur inappropriate language that might be on a person’s T-Shirt due to FCC rules and live TV. In PR/Marketing we just switch out the shirt.

If you are a one-man-band communications professional what does that mean?

It means you are totally responsible for everything. I believe this is the one thing many who start their career as part of a staff often never learn what it means to tell the story. They are just doing one part and not seeing how it all fits together.

What are the advantages of working with a team of communicators?

It is great to have others to bounce your ideas off. If you work with writer, designers, editors, photographers and videographers they all have a different perspective. Sometimes they see and hear things you are not wired to catch.

What are the advantages of the one-man-team for communication?

The best thing someone can do for a part of their career is be a one band shop. You will learn so much more by knowing the audience is relying on you as much as the subject to connect them.

WHY is this the topic???????

So many have said they are self-taught. Many have never been coached or mentored before in their career. I believe one of the best things I am feeling could be a benefit from this is to give people a chance to get a taste of what mentoring\coaching can be.

Find a mentor/coach to help you grow and become a better communicator. Learn how to work within the ethics of the type of communication you are doing.