To start with the basics, journalism, in simple terms, is the process of gathering information about events from the world and sharing it with people via various media outlets. Usually, the term journalism is only used for mainstream news—hard news in professional terms, but there are various types of journalism one can explore which are divided into 2 broad categories—hard news and soft news. Ahead, we dive deep into this subject so if you’re an aspiring journalist, this piece is for you!
Hard journalism is based on news that is urgent and directly affects the lives of people. It includes political news, crime, economics, business etc. Hard news is timely content and needs to be factually accurate therefore requires intense research and fact-checking. Below are all the types of journalism that fall under this category.
As the name suggests, political journalism covers all aspects of political science. Thorough knowledge of political figures, political events, government policies, functioning of the government, government bodies, elections, electoral campaigns is of utmost importance in this field. Furthermore, there are three types of political journalism, one which deals with local news, one that deals with country-wide news and one that deals with international news. For someone who wants to explore international political journalism, you must not only be aware of your own country’s system but also of other countries.
Under crime journalism, you not only cover violent crimes but also white-collar crimes, frauds, cybercrime, terrorism etc. Anything that needs to be brought to justice or matters—political or not that need to be exposed all come under crime journalism. Apart from the general process and steps of research that any journalist carries out, crime journalists also visit the crime areas, attend court hearings and conduct interviews with relevant people to deliver the most accurate news. Most often, the news covered by crime journalists comes with a final and closed verdict.
Investigative journalism is a form of journalism wherein journalists are mostly focused on a single piece of news that needs to be exposed and brought to light. The subjects are usually criminal in nature but the difference between crime journalism and investigative is that investigative journalism can go on for longer periods of time, from months to years even. There are often new developments in such stories and therefore journalists spend most of their time studying a single matter. One of the best examples of investigative journalism is the case being fought for actor Sushant Singh Rajput which has been in the works for over a year.
You ever read news about how the stock market is rising or crashing or articles written on how the new policies by the finance minister will affect businesses or the coming together of two or more businesses that will have a direct impact on people? The news that tells you about the economy—national or international, is business journalism.
Soft news is information one consumes which isn’t urgent, timely or has a direct impact on people’s lives. It’s got a mix of important information and entertainment. As opposed to hard news, soft news is something people consume basis their interest like arts, sports, fashion, lifestyle etc.
It’s what the name suggests—gathering and delivering everything that goes on in the world of sports. From real-time updates at the field to post-coverage of sports events, decoding politics that go on behind the scenes, delivering opinion-based pieces to start a conversation and more, sports journalism is pretty much a sports enthusiast’s dream come true.
From the spot in the city that is famous for celebrity appearances, gossip about their personal lives, covering their social life to talking about their films, successes and failures, celebrity journalism covers every aspect of a celebrity’s life.
Flipping through the pages of a fashion magazine, looking up the latest trends in fashion, reading about which designer is on the rise to the collections dominating at various fashion weeks, fashion journalists pretty much bring to the fore everything you need to know from the fashion industry.
If you’re someone who likes to read on where you should take your next trip, the hotels to stay at, explore various cuisines, read up about the world of art, maybe music or pieces about healing and wellness, lifestyle journalism is the beat for you. This form of journalism covers the entertainment side of life, the best ways to spend your leisure time and live a wholesome life.
Along with a variety of beats in journalism, you also have the option to choose the mode via which you wish to communicate with people. Let’s dive deeper into that below.
Print journalism is what you see and read in newspapers, magazines, flyers, scholarly journals and more. Usually, print journalism involves pieces that are extensive in nature and cover a topic at length from top to bottom.
As the name suggests, digital journalism is the news or content you consume via the internet. It involves writing short-form blogs or articles for online websites, curating snackable content for social media and more. The information is generally short and crisp on digital mediums considering the short attention span of users on the internet as opposed to their attention spans while consuming information via print mediums.
Broadcast journalism is the news delivered via electronic mediums think television, radio, live telecasts on social media platforms and more. Broadcast journalists either deliver news live from the particular place of event they’re covering or pre-record in media rooms at the respective publication’s office. This mode of journalism consists of live interviews, debates and discussions and is meant for a large outreach.
We hope this gives you a good idea of journalism as a career and exactly what you could pursue under it!
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