MMU have set up a series of talks for students and tutors to learn about what is happening in todays media about how top get in to the industry and if there is a place for new people in this industry..
this weeks was on journalism. completely not my field of practice but i still found the talks really interesting and found that a lot of the info could be used in any line of work usually.
will Astburg is 24 and a journalist righting articles as part of the group for tic tac press. he has worked on previous piece for a magazine called bean which is based on universities around the uk comment on the whats happening on there area of the university and the city, changing cities each month.also runs manchester mouth which is a web based media and digital spy which is a gossip website.
he himself did a degree in english and history and then went on to do a intensive 20 week course in journalism while on a placement for a newspaper. Basically from that he just took any job that he could get his hands on from house magazines as you can't be picky or you'll get no where.
his basic advice was to be flexible. go where ever the job takes you and if you have to move move because you have to take every chance you have. to ring people rather than send them and email that way you actually talk to someone and there for your more likely to catch their eye rather than just and email. also to do little notices about the convocation that you have such as the date, what you talked about what they said, and then when you talk to these people again you can comment or ask about something on the previous chat and feed to their personal side and become more friendly than just contacts. also to keep a contact list of every one you never know when you might want them.
although you need to go for every opportunity in your spare time you should also wright about something you are passionate about such as a blog rant on about your favourite music or a new tv program anything that could get noticed and something that will improve you skills and make you think more about what you are righting and what makes a good story.
John Robb is a very famous man in manchester and many places for being a music journalist righting a lot of articles, releasing two books interviewing big bands and also being in a band himself called the Goldblade.
John is very passionate about music and the DIY side of music which started in the 70s with the punk music along with this become the new kind of culture with new journalist wright stories that mattered and making magazines that were hand wrighten messy retro style.
he explained that journalism's has changed a lot not only the way the it is produces and seen but the way that it is done as back in the day the wrhters would right about anything they were passionate about and anything they liked and got excited about but now they seem to just care if the song/band will be big and where will it get in the charts and it's kind of took teh sole of the journalist side of things as the world today you can't just write what you want to right you have to think about what the readers will say or if it's politely correct where as before people wrote what they thought and didn't care. there are still people like this but not as many as they don't want to get sued or anything.
Both talkers talked about how the internet has changed everything dramatically and that there since the internet the sales of hard copies have fallen and keep on falling as the years go bay. The internet is such a has such a vast amount of information on it that people can go on to any site and read everything there is to know about a band and also every lie there is to know about a band. john commented on that there is no real mystery about music anymore and that journalist can't be one step ahead of other people because the internet is already ten steps in fount of them and every can asses the internet and find out about something.
although it kind of sounds like the internet has killed journalism it has in a way but it has also made it easier for some people as say if you were asked to wright a piece on something you had never heard of you can easily get the internet off the web and then put it in to your own words. also a great place to start is to start a blog but also there is millions of them so you think is there any point but if you don't do it you'll never know.
the internet has made it free for music and this has evetced journalism in the same way as bands. it's alright for the famous bands that have loads of money but for the other little bands it's not fair as they are making no money and can't get any where. but it surveys them right the people should be able to get music for free and that they sell albums for £12 yet they cost 50p to make but again the little bands have spend time to produce these and so the same goes to the journalist when they people say you shouldn't be paid for that your only writing a review on the gig and you enjoy it but it's your time your giving up to review the piece and it's your jobs and your trying to make money out of it so why shouldn't you charge.
anyways, there also seems to be a little bit of trouble with the idea of who owns what.. you did the interview and the righting yet as the newspaper/magazine published it they own it and can pass it on to as many people they like with out paying you agin or do you own it and you past it on or what. different people go by different rules and you would have to watch out about that . but in life people are going to steal your ideas. turn you down and rob you but you have to be thick skinned and keep going.
so is there a place for music journalism now well yes in a way although there is no real money out of it and it would seem more like a hobby than a career music journalism isn't just about he gig or about the music but linking the pieces together and thinking about where that came from and how that links to that and how music is influences by other music and linking the points up with the different genre.
it's also more of a personal buzz rather than a job as if you right a blog about a band and then introduce people to that band your spreading the word and people comment back saying thanks i love that band now. you have spread the word and made them open their eyes to a new band giving yourself more of a person buzz, you can't make money that way but still makes you feel good about yourself.
so yer thats basically what i got from the talk it was good and interesting but not really my field and if it was my field i think i would try and reconsider as it sounds like a hobby rather than a job now teh way things are going.