A PROFESSIONAL journalist, who asks not to be named, has written to share some thoughts about twittering from court and, of greater interest to parents with children who fancy tertiary courses in journalism, the slim chance they will find jobs upon graduation:
“….Journalism courses started when the old Arbitration Commission gave the AJA a nice pay increase in the late 1960s and commented that it would be easier to justify if degree courses were available to establish credentials as “a profession” not a craft. The pioneer RMIT course (then a diploma) kicked off the next year and my business has been going downhill ever since. What’s so hard about reporting what you see, writing in clear English and keeping the bias out of what you write? That’s all journalism is. But if you are going to study it for four years you need to pad the topics…..
“….every uni now has a journalism school but the best journos I know of never went near one ... News orgs are full of these grads and the real crime is they only do a single year’s on the job training! The old system made you do a three or four year apprenticeship. My partner is a nurse and sees the same thing as training moved from the ward to the lecture room: Lots of theory but trouble finding a vein.
“…daughter talked about doing journalism at Melbourne, RMIT or Monash but we talked her out of it. She went for law/history instead and if she wants to write that will be a better grounding for her. And she is more likely to get a job with a “real” degree rather than trendy crap taught by people who can’t hack in real life newsrooms ... the professors should feel guilty they are churning out thousands of grads every year when the industry isn't hiring. How do they sleep at night?"
As for twittering from court, the Mt Ink Stained Wretch notes “every first year cadet knows you have to turn off your phone in court and that doing anything except follow proceedings can be seen as contempt. My old cadet counselor used to tell us about a reporter who was smacked around by the beak for rolling a cigarette!”
As for tweeting, he sends this link, which makes interesting reading
And there is more in The Australian