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The functions of a professional journalist.

The functions of a professional journalist.

A journalist is a professional who conducts research, writes, and accounts on information in order to present in sources, conduct interviews, take part in research, and generates reports. In this article we look at 8 functions of a professional journalist. And they are as follows:

Gatekeeping role – This has to do with the control of information flow into a media house. This basically has to do with the type of information that come in, whether the information is good enough or seeks to defame one’s reputation or goes against the media’s code of ethics.

Provision of information- As part of the functions of a journalist, he or she is to provide information to the audiences’ with regards to issues of social, economic, political and cultural importance.

Watchdog role/surveillance – Correspondent stations on the ground to serve as a check on activities that seek to destabilise the social order. Also, a check or watchdog on government in order for government to be accountable to the people. Examples are correspondents at our airports, hospitals, harbours, seat of government, just to mention a few.

Agenda setting role- The journalists also sets the agenda for their audiences via reporting of incidents that take place in society. In other words, journalist can be said to establish the process of agenda setting that seeks to inform respective audiences’.

Economic function – Society depends on journalists to tell them everything as far as the economy is concerned. Inflation rates, GDP, prices of fuel, goods and services, interest rates are some economic projections that are covered and disseminated in order to give the audience a fair idea as to how the economy is doing.

Political function – This has to do with covering political activities such as political rallies, conferences, congress, debates, activities of the electoral commission, just to mention a few.

Agents of change – The whole process of election and its issue of change has at the heart of it, the indispensable role of journalists. Also, they expose or cover stories that seek to destabilise and destroy the social order, is an avenue for change from bad to good.

Entertainment – Covering entertainment stories to aid release the tension and stress characterised with everyday life. A whole media house, newspaper and magazine allocated just for covering this stories help achieve the entertainment stories.

A tool for societal cohesion – Promotion of cultural values and systems that bind people together. A do away with language, behaviour and attitudes that seek to destabilise social and cultural unity.

In short, the journalism function has never been easy but making effort to have it done very well, pays in the long run. 

Source: ghananews.hrforum.uk

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