The Media School

My first street reporting experience

March 28th, 2019 by

From the broadcast booth, to a cold street in the winter. The setting changed, however people with opinions is a constant.

In my experience as a radio producer, people do want to talk to you. The 15 minutes of fame motivates callers and people to interact with the show. This exercise was unique in my journalism career. I had to change up my interview method to a print format.

The first lesson of the experience was to time interviews in accordance with the weather. I waited to do my interviews with the hope of weather improving. Instead, I learned not to wait to two days before the assignment was due.

When interviewing random subjects, only one person turned me down. I realized interviewing random people is akin to a used car salesman. You must convince people with a preconceived notion that you aren’t like “the others”. The person who turned me down was skeptical of journalists.

“The interview subjects appreciated the value of their opinion. The conversation went so well, that two of the interviewees asked me first for an email.”

The interviewees appreciated the light-hearted banter as they discussed food. I knew interviewees would be excited to talk about their favorite food.

I didn’t know what the reaction the local food and beverage tax question would invoke. Interviewees understood the implications of the tax, but many didn’t know what the tax would be specifically funding. The tax would go to fund the expansion of the convention center.

As a person that only speaks on subjects I have  researched, I was personally taken aback people would be speaking without knowing all the information. I appreciated their time but wish they would read a local paper.

Tracy continued to have relationships with former restaurant coworkers. Martin-Coleman, from the same story, desired to read the final draft. She gave great recommendations for local dishes to eat your next night out.

The lessons learned will help me street interview for the future.