Since training to be a journalist, I have come across some rather silly stereotypes. It seems that journalists aren’t generally liked! (Although I’m not sure that this is entirely fair.) Anyway: I have come across some stereotypes-some made me laugh with incredulity, some had me incensed. So, I thought I would share them with you.
“You’re too nice”.
I wasn’t sure what to make of this one. (And no, I’m not fishing for compliments.) When I said that from (last) September, I would be training to be a journalist, someone said to me “But you’re too nice!” Errmmm… But pretty much every journalist I have met is ‘nice’, whatever that means. The person then went on to inference corruption-and naming other journalists who have gone to prison.
All journalists are scum.
Saw this on Twitter-and the user clearly spread fake news. *Sighs*
“they use the FOI act all the time to get their stories.”
Along with a hate-on-journalist maxim, this remark was (in part) said to a class mate. I’m pretty sure that this is not the only place to get a story-and I even wrote about this here. It’s silly to suggest this, as it’s not true.
In the aftermath of a terror incident, whether it’s via Twitter, or knocking on a door continually, people who’d survived an attack where hounded. There’s no other way to put it. To be blunt: yes, this behaviour was a hallmark of a vulture. But: most publications would probably not support this. (After all, it goes against the IPSO code.) But: not all journalists are bad.
Fake media news.
I’m not even going to comment on this one, let alone waste time typing a response. Because… it’s subjective, and also used as an excuse to attack a free press.
“This is off the record-not to be published, or posted on your blog.”
Since I have started training, this sentence has cropped up more and more in conversation. But.. surely a good journalist knows what is appropriate to publish, and not what to publish? Also: it’s highly unlikely that in a sociable conversation I will report what you tell me in private. Because that’s cruel! And, with reference again to the IPSO code, I am obliged to protect the identity of sources.
(Unless someone is in imminent danger, they are being hurt, or it’s in the public interest. These are the only exceptions, and so far, they have been the rarity. As in, I haven’t published anything yet, and I’ve kept what people tell me private.)
You’re all phone hackers.
I have written a little bit about why I wish to be a journalist, and why I am training to be one… But, simply put, we are not all “phone hackers”. And I really detest where groups of people are bound together, and told they all do the same thing.
Rule of thumb: you should not do it.