News in glare of cameras, on the go!
It was the Iraq war, and its minute reporting by CNN, through satellite TV, that changed how we consume and react to news. To report news as and when it happens is only possible through TV, radio and web - collectively called the broadcast media.
Where are the jobs?
There is tremendous diversity in this medium. A few of the leading Hindi and English news channels are Aaj Tak, ABP News, Zee News, CNN-IBN, Times Now, Headlines Today, and NDTV. Radio stations like Big 92.7, Radio City 91.1, 94.3 My FM/Radio One, Oye 104.8 FM are the leading Indian radio frequency modulation (FM) channels.
What is expected from you?
Candidates with good oratory and communication skills, who are ready to work round the clock under immense pressure, are up-to-date with the current affairs and have an interest in news should pursue this career. TV journalism is not just about an anchor reading news from a teleprompter or a reporter speaking from field anymore. Students are progressively looking for roles beyond these fixed jobs. Positions behind the camera have now become popular career choices, with a lot of aspirants opting to work on desk as news editors and scriptwriters, in production team as assistant producers, floor managers, guest coordinators, and as studio and field camerapersons. Nowadays, anchors have a much stronger control over their shows and need to have extremely good knowledge, presence of mind and debating skills.
“Television journalism is the most comprehensive storytelling in all media. Just the idea of visually telling a story is so interesting and effective at the same time, that it feeds the viewer with all the information needed,” says Bhaskar Goswami, assistant producer with NDTV.
Is radio still alive?
In India, radio news is restricted to government-run All India Radio as private radio stations are not licensed to broadcast news. Therefore, students who want to join radio stream mainly find jobs in private FMs. However, radio is still very popular, especially in rural areas and metros. Openings in AIR, other than for news management, are announced through Prasar Bharti and usually those with a graduate degree is eligible to sit for a test. Radio aspirants can become news readers, programme producers, programme executives, scriptwriters, reporters, etc.
Does a degree help?
A degree or diploma in broadcast journalism can help you get the education and skills necessary to grab one of these job opportunities. However, a specialized degree or diploma in broadcast journalism is largely given by PG colleges like IIJNM, TV Today Media Institute, and ACJ. There is stiff competition in broadcast journalism with growing number of students opting to study the course. With more new channels coming up and probability of permission to private radio stations to air news, jobs are only going to increase.