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The official site of the Journalism Education Association of New Zealand (Jeanz)

Site updated December 05

Crowded schedule lined up for Hamilton conference
Jeanz members are in for a busy annual conference in Hamilton with 16 sessions plus an after-dinner speaker planned for the second day, Thursday 8 December.

An updated programme for the conference at Wintec (7 - 9 December) has just been released by organisers Charles Riddle and Grant Hannis.

A computer-assisted research and reporting seminar, organised jointly with the Journalists Training Organisation, runs on Wednesday 7 December. Speakers include NBR's Francis Till, New Zealand Herald's Eugene Bingham and Stephen Cornes from the Companies Office.

Jeanz business gets underway with the AGM on the Wednesday evening. Thursday 8 December will be a full day of academic papers followed by the conference dinner. The guest speaker at the conference dinner is Judge Robert Wolf, of the Hamilton District Court.

Papers will be presented on: #abuilding investigative journalism skillsa#aproject-based learninga#acommunity radio and womena#agender in the newsrooma#aa personal view of journalism traininga#awriting skillsa#aa study of Listener coversa#aconsumer journalisma#asports reportinga#anews room languagea#aethics and the reporting of natural disasters.

Scheduled for Friday 9 December is a discussion led by the JTO including workplace assessment, moderation, and the need to update unit standards (please bring a copy of the unit standards you deliver). The conference is due to finish at 1pm.

Detailed programmes for CARR seminar and Jeanz conference sessions, 7 - 9 December 2005, Waikato Institute of Technology City Campus, Hamilton. The conference registration fee is $50. The CARR seminar fee is $30.

Wintec campus mapaaaaaaHamilton map

One-eyed broadcasters set up Metro News
Take four second-year broadcast journalism students. Teach them to operate a television camera, accurately record sound, edit news stories, craft stories together into a half-hour news programme, spruce them up with hairspray and makeup … and what do you have?

A successful recipe for a regional weekly news programme, as well as a Level 7 applied project for degree students of the New Zealand Broadcasting School.

Emily Gibbs, Beverly Lockhart, Beth Roche and Arrun Soma were looking for a major project to complete their Bachelor of Broadcasting Communications on-campus work in Christchurch, before they head out into the industry on six-month internships. They recognised a gap in the local television market through the recent end of CTV’s news programme. They researched various areas of regional television and the life of a video-journalist and offered their services as a ready-made newsroom.

The four, under the supervision of Head of School Paul Norris, put together and presented eight programmes titled Metro News, covering news stories the networks weren’t covering. Emily says: “I researched the regional TV audience and found viewers wanted to see items about places and people they recognised and identified with. Although the run-up to the general election fell across our timeframe, we made the decision to ignore it completely. We figured network viewers were getting enough of that there and our audience wanted a break from it, to see what was going on in this city and region.”

Head of School Paul Norris says: “This was a very good demonstration of how students can learn a great deal from the day-to-day practice of journalism. They worked immensely hard, had a lot of fun and learnt so much. It is an example of immersion learning at its best.”

CTV production and operations manager Nikki Edwards agrees. “The four students made a very professional team. They are incredibly talented and versatile young people, who produced a very professional programme, which was very well received by our viewers.” (Yvonne Densem)

PHOTO: From left: Beverley, Beth, Arrun and Emily toast the success of Metro News.

Hollings and Jeffs win conference grants
The third annual JEA-JEANZ grant has been awarded to James Hollings from Massey University. James joined the Massey staff in February this year and has previously worked at Radio NZ and The Evening Post. He will soon embark on his doctoral studies. James will present a paper at the JEA conference in Surfers Paradise on “Journalism Ethics and the Reporting of Natural Disasters,” as well as presenting at the JEANZ conference in Hamilton. The grant pays for his travel expenses and accommodation to Australia as well as registration for the conference.

Kennedee-Lauren Jeffs will attend the JEANZ conference as the winner of the JEANZ award for a young Maori or Pacific Island student. This award, funded by Waiariki and Massey, provides $600. She has just completed her third year at AUT University, with a Bachelor of Communication Studies, majoring in journalism and plans to eventually go on to do a masters degree. Growing up in a multi-cultural neighbourhood, Kennedee describes her ethnicity as Samoan-European. She has a passion for telling stories, especially with Pacific Island content and making a difference through her writing. Her goal is to raise the profile of Polynesian journalists and communities and raise awareness of their talents and abilities. She also won the 2005 PIMA Best Student Award.

Te Waha Nui team scoops Wallace awards
AUT University dominated this year's Wallace Awards for political journalism and general election coverage, winning six out of the nine awards on offer.

Te Waha Nui, with its three-edition coverage of the election, won the top award and a prize of $750. The judges complimented the paper on its "breadth of coverage, effective choice and use of a variety of writing styles, good design and an above-average standard of writing generally."

Duncan Greive won the major merit prize of $500 for a portfolio of two stories, and Britton Broun (with colleague Bonnie White for one story) won the second major merit prize of $300 for a portfolio of three stories. Miles Erwin, Rosie Cotter and Nicole Stanley won merit awards of $100 each.

In presenting the awards Dr Helena Catt, chief executive of the Electoral Commission, sponsor of the awards, said journalists had an important role to empower the public in the election process. Commission communications manager Peter Northcote said the media need to address why people do or don’t get involved in voting and improve their electoral coverage. He said Te Waha Nui covered a variety of issues with a good mix of harder and softer news, and was engaging.

News Production course leader Associate Professor David Robie said the success is a credit to the hard work that the Te Waha Nui editorial team had put into producing their election coverage."It was the first time our newspaper has covered the national elections and a lot of fine individual and team effort was put into the coverage," he said.

Electronic wizardry 'makes plagiarism easier'
A New Zealand media educator has called for an industry debate and action on the problems of plagiarism and fabulism in an article in the latest edition of Pacific Journalism Review.

Alan Samson, of Massey University's journalism school, writing in a special 254-page "ethics and accountability" edition of the journal, says "electronic wizardry makes plagiarism easier" and "it seems sensible for the industry to heighten its sensitivity" to a global problem.

Samson's analysis of plagiarism and fabulism in New Zealand follows a row last month over former Pacific reporter John Manukia. Manukia was sacked from the Herald on Sunday after revelations that he fabricated a two-page profile on an ex-police officer who used controversial law-and-order methods.

This edition of PJR is co-edited by Professor Claude-Jean Bertrand, of Paris University 2, and Associate Professor David Robie, of AUT. Bertrand is a leading advocate of media accountability systems (MAS). In his introductory commentary, Bertrand is critical of the slowness of "self-regulation" approaches which produce results that are "rarely spectacular".

"Some of them do seem to be little more than a PR operation, or than a legislation-avoiding operation," he says. "They do seem incapable of eliminating the most serious media sins, like omission or infotainment. And then, some are quite expensive."

He argues the US has demonstrated over the past 10 years that a deregulated market has caused a "terrible decline of the press, print and electronic". While freedom and regulation are needed, they are not enough, he says. A third force - "quality control" or the "public service ideal" - is needed. "It consists in an alliance of profession and people to provide proper information to be gathered and distributed so that democracy can survive."

IAlso in PJR, associate professor and investigative journalist Wendy Bacon provides an analysis of 20 years of reporting of Aboriginal deaths in custody as a case study in a failure of media ethics; Shailendra Singh documents media accountability systems in the South Pacific; former New Zealand Herald editor-in-chief Gavin Ellis analyses self-regulatory media systems in New Zealand; and James Hollings dissects ethical issues for media coverage of the Asian tsunami. Anthony Mason offers interviews with 1987 Fiji military coup leader Sitiveni Rabuka and former Fiji Times editor Vijendra Kumar.

* Copies of PJR can be ordered from USP Book Centre in Fiji or South Pacific Books Ltd in NZ. Subscriptions are available direct from the PJR website at AUT.

Exercise no barrier to learning
Four first-year students and a tutor from the New Zealand Broadcasting School in Christchurch recently travelled to Auckland to pit their wits against government communications advisors.

The group took part in an exercise named Exercise Barrier, a roleplay where competing journalists were uncovering an evolving story and seeking comment from the various agencies involved.

Journalism tutor Yvonne Densem says: “This was a wonderful opportunity for the students to hone their research, interviewing and writing skills, turn out as many stories as possible and think laterally about the information they were being given – and, importantly, not given. Each student took on two personalities, which was a challenge in itself. One student, for example, called himself Jack when he was a mild-mannered radio reporter, and Carlos when he was a pushy and confrontational overseas network TV reporter.

“It was not unusual to see a student place a phone call to the communications centre we were working ‘against’, identify him or herself as one person, get the responses to questions, hang up and do it all again in his or her other character. It was challenging and fun, not to mention a fantastic learning opportunity.”

It was also a long day. The group was at the airport just after 5am, flew to Auckland, worked the day and arrived back at Christchurch airport at 9pm. “Yes, we were tired, but mentally stimulated, with plenty of stories to tell and lots of laughs to share,” says Yvonne. “We de-briefed on the plane. We had turned in a pile of stories, which went to a central point for the communications people to consider. We had also attended three mock press conferences, which was a new experience for the young journalists, who were at that stage in the early stages of their second semester of degree study.”

The exercise centred on a scenario of a fishing boat docking at Princes Wharf, carrying about 70 illegal immigrants. While the journalists were trying to get information about the travellers, agency staff were facing their own challenges, going through the established routines for dealing with such a situation.

Zelda MacKenzie, co-ordinator of Exercise Barrier and communications manager for NZ Customs, says: "The participation of the 'pseudo media' was invaluable. We set up a joint agency media centre for the exercise and tried to replicate a real-world scenario as closely as possible. The student involvement certainly helped us decide which processes worked and which need to be refined before the next exercise. While I was really happy Jack took part in the exercise, I for one hope Carlos continues to live and work happily in another country, any country except New Zealand!" (YD)

Changing faces at AUT University
Greg Treadwell (left) has joined the staff at AUT's journalism school. Greg comes to AUT after seven years reporting and editing at Gulf News on Waiheke. He will be involved in producing Te Waha Nui and teaching on a range of core journalism papers.

John Laird (right) moves on after five years at AUT. John's teaching included running the school's New Media Journalism paper. He returns to the industry as a part-time sub-editor at the New Zealand Herald.