News journalists are involved in the collecting and writing of information which they consider newsworthy. Typically, news journalists work for newspapers or online news sites, as well as in some broadcast media like radio and television. Journalists must have excellent written and verbal communication skills to effectively gather information in interviews and create informative, but concise, news stories.
News journalists are often assigned to specific areas of focus, such as local/community news, regional work, or reporting that is specific to criminal activity, politics, or government. In all cases, news journalists follow rules of ethics as laid down by the editors and publishers which employ them regarding sourcing of news stories and gathering information. A big part of successful news journalism is developing and publishing a breaking story quickly to beat competing news outlets, but many news media sources try to balance this desire for speed with requirements for accuracy or multiple sourcing at various levels. News journalists ultimately must write accurately at all times in order to build confidence and demonstrate competence on their particular news “beat." This can also help them develop both on-record and confidential sources who can assist in news-gathering and investigating processes.
For many news journalists, the education path begins with a university degree in journalism or a related field, and most journalists seek out internships during college to gain practical experience and make contacts in the field. News journalists must have strong writing and typing skills and should expect to earn experience with fairly routine and unexciting tasks at the beginning of this career. Most news journalists work days and evenings during the week, but the need to gather information and occurrences of breaking news typically lead to irregular hours, as well.
Journalist, News Tasks
Review and edit copy.
Report and write stories for newspapers, magazines, radio, television, or the internet.
Collect and interpret facts about news events through interviews, investigations, and observation.
Work with news editor and reporters to generate new content.