Photo, Video, Infographic and Article by Erin Valentine
In a world overflowing with information, it is essential to have credibility and a trusted name. This is one of the biggest pieces of advice Tim Franklin, managing editor of Bloomberg News, the largest news bureau in Washington, had for Elon University students today.
Franklin spoke to students about the career of journalism today, and how to become a credible and active journalist.
A budding journalist now has to have a vast array of skill sets.
“It’s become a much more complex multitasking environment for journalists these days,” said Franklin.
Franklin often mentioned the power of Twitter in today’s reporting. Stories such as the Boston bombing and the Asiana Airlines crashes were broken on Twitter.
“You are at the water’s edge of a historic transformation of the media business,” said Franklin. “It’s an explosion of new media and an explosion of new technologies. The barrier to entry is very low, meaning that anybody with a great idea can succeed.”
“You’ve got to love it,” explaind Franklin of the unknown schedule of news and journalism.
“It’s a job that is not for everybody. You’ve got to really want to do it and you’ve got to really be passionate about it… You’re a witness to history. You’re in the middle of the biggest stories of the world.”
Franklin gave students key advice on how to steer their career in the direction they wanted to go. He recommended students find the best blogs and publications and follow them. He also said that student journalists have to be persistent and need to plan and be strategic to give their career a strong start.
“Curiosity,” said Franklin of one of the most important things to have as a young journalist. “If you’re not naturally a curious person, if you’re not interested in why things happen or what’s going on in the world around you, it’s not going to work.”
Part of Franklin’s advice was to also learn to utilize statistics and data. He said that using data and statistics to tell a story can be an incredibly powerful tool in the journalist’s tool belt.
Franklin encouraged students to be passionate about and love what they’re doing.
“It’s exhilarating, but you have to be fast and you have to be accurate,” noted Franklin. “And sometimes those things come in to conflict.”
Franklin started his career with a simple goal in mind. “I wanted to be a wordsmith, a storyteller,” said Franklin.