Thursday, November 5, 2015
Lillian Ross: Listening is Crucial Reporting Skill
By Stephen Saulpaugh
Lillian Ross wastes no time in conveying to her readers her view on reporting the news .She feels that when reporting the news, one should go about it like creating a film, "that tells a story with a beginning, a middle, and an end,” Ross states in her book Reporting Back: Notes on Journalism. From reading this piece and analyzing that statement it is very clear the Ross is very blunt in her practices as a journalist and is not willing to compromise her beliefs for the sake of money or insincerity. She equates writing about a particular person as a relationship, one that is not to be abandoned or abused.
Ross makes a point that is particularly interesting. She admits to not using a tape recorder when interviewing someone because she finds that "the machine distorts the truth.” She makes a compelling point that I have never given much thought to. Nowadays people tend to live off their phones and laptops, and pay little attention to actually living in the moment and generating their own opinion about things. People are very quick to see what others make of the news and generate their opinions that way, rather than making one’s own sense of news.
Among Ross’s many tips to aspiring journalists, the best point she makes is when she stresses the importance of listening. Good listening is one of the most crucial aspects of not only being a good journalist, but a good communicator. If you are going to communicate to the rest of the public important happenings in the news, you must possess good listening skills so that you are better able to deliver a more thorough story.