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A piece of Leo’s mind July 22, 2008

Posted by luzrimban in ACFJ, journalism.
Tags: , ,

Here are a few words from Leo Magno, whose talk at the recent 3rd Forum of Emerging Leaders in Asian Journalism/Ateneo-ACFJ Alumni Homecoming elicited hoots and howls and generated some discussion among us alumni. (Actually it’s good because it makes us think of the future of the profession and of journalists).

This was written originally as a comment, but I’m posting it as an entry for everyone to read. My comment to Leo: you make me sound so ancient! In the words of Werner vom Busch, a “dinosaur.” But at least I know how to blog. Anyway, here’s a piece of Leo’s mind:

i also failed to mention during my talk that, yes, our entry-level reporters (the multi-skilled, multi-platform ones we are getting for the first time), also DO get compensated better than our counterparts in print and even some from TV

so yah, the passion is there, they are flexible and yes, they are remunerated well

THAT is the passion i speak of — from a new breed of journalists who were already multimedia and multi-platform even before they were hired, and so they do get paid well (the last 6 reporters we hired were such people, but one of them didn’t make the cut, it’s the harsh reality we have to face — that our needs are very specialized and not everyone will make it)

it would be harder to, say, hire a reporter working for X number of years whose salary has already skyrocketed in his/her previous media organization and then train that person against his or her will and demand to just write and get the pay he/she has already been accustomed to

whereas, the passion i speak of in our new hires is already existent since they work with multimedia in their daily lives — via blogs, youtube and the like. they were born in the Internet generation, the Internet was already there and, for them, is now like pen and paper was to us

i do find it easier to channel that social networking and technical skills toward good reporting — the new hirees are journalism graduates anyway and our desk is composed of veteran journalists. so with the foundation already at the desk, it is easier to mold this “new breed” and convert them into diligent reporters adhering to the standards of journalism

now, with this “new breed” in place and being set as an example in the company, the “recalcitrant” ones in the media organization actually became inspired, saying “hey, if they can do it, so can i.”

so yes, the strategy is working beautifully as we introduce these new multi-skilled journalists and see that the veteran ones are also diving into it. as an online and multimedia news org, there is nowhere else for us to go but multi-platform, and we are seeing the waves of this sea change crashing into our employees’ consciousness. that approach has been made through the introduction of new reporters who are ready for the digital age and are giving us all a totally different perspective of how reporters in a specialized medium like ours should be like in the future (which is actually now)




1. vanitha nadaraj - July 22, 2008

We need to clarify what is meant by “passion” here.
I have always assumed that “passion” when spoken in the same breath as journalism means showing immense concern and commitment for the news-gathering and news-writing processes and the outcome.
Maybe for Leo, it means an intense desire to embrace technology involving the media and communications.

2. Zaky’s concerns « ATENEO-ACFJ Alumni Online - July 22, 2008

[…] trackback Zaky Yamani has some questions for Leo, which he sent in as a comment to the post “A piece of Leo’s mind.” But it’s a long piece, so we’re posting it here as a separate entry to this […]

3. leo magno - July 23, 2008

hi vanitha!

ok allow me to clarify what i meant by passion. you are correct — passion means concern and commitment in the news-gathering and news-writing process. and i also meant that.

at the same time, i also meant it as a desire to embrace technology involving media.

these two CAN be found in the same person, and that’s what we’re looking for and constantly developing, and have found in some of our new hires and the veterans who have embraced it in our company.

that would be a lethal combination — if we sit still while new and veteran journalists with BOTH passion for news and passion for emerging media continue to proliferate in the newsroom, then, yes, we do have reason to worry and assess ourselves lest we be left behind


4. The survival of the specie: Dana’s take « ATENEO-ACFJ Alumni Online - July 23, 2008

[…] started with the talk Leo Magno gave at the 3rd Forum of Emerging Leaders in Asian Journalism, and his rejoinder to some comments. Incidentally, Leo has replied to Zaky as well as to Vanitha […]

5. john - April 23, 2009

What journalism standard Magno is talking about? I just listened to dzmm, and I heard that a staff of Magno has filed a case against him. The issue? sexual harassment.

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