Everyone has to choose some profession, vocation or career. This is required by the necessities of life. Some take to medicine, while others pursue engineering. Some are content with shop keeping alone, while other parade as business magnates or rich businessmen. Some undergo training for teaching (like B.Ed, B.T, etc) while others receive higher education and become lecturers, professors and the like. Therefore, as many aptitudes or circumstances, as many professions. Journalism is also one of the very prominent professions in the 20th century. Plenty of people go about as journalist.
Journalism requires a regular and exhaustive training. This training can be completed by way of practical experience or by regular course of study in the college or university. The course of training is usually known as D.J (Diploma in Journalism). Ordinarily, anybody who writes something’s for publication in newspapers, periodicals or magazine, parades about as a journalist, but it is precisely not so. Journalists exactly speaking are persons who work on the regular establishment of newspapers organizations or regular magazines, periodicals etc. Journalism, therefore, calls for a sustained training and experience alone the right channel.
As a career, journalism calls for a genuine aptitude from the very early stages of one’s life. It necessitates a very wide knowledge and craves for more learning. A journalist must possess an insatiable mind thirsty and hungry for knowledge. His mind must always be roaming about for more information and knowledge. He must be a tireless soul, in quest of knowledge. In a way, a journalist has to be all-rounder and must possess an unquenchable desire for more and fresh acquisition. He must also possess a high degree of accuracy in thinking and writing. Precision and exactitude are things which are positive essentials of a good journalist. Otherwise, he misses the mark or is misunderstood by readers.
Journalism as a career requires big sacrifices and determination to work hard and tirelessly. Often, journalists are called upon to work round the clock. A journalist must have a very sound stomach and generally be a very rough and tough guy. The journalist has to keep awake mostly during the crucial parts of the night, sitting tight at his desk; he has to go on battling with fresh reports and hand-cuts. The job calls for hard and active labor.
Journalism has advanced in its methods with the passage of years. “It is no longer ponderous, instructive and formal”. A good journalist creates his own peculiar styles, sets up an individual standard. He knows the art of creating the taste and demand for what he offers. One stresses the personal element; another sets greater store by propaganda. The reader is drawn to the style which is attractive to him. And so every journal has its own set of readers, who will an easily forgo their morning breakfast as there morning paper.
Journalism has many competitors today. Chief of all is the radio which not only broadcasts new but has the added advantage of arranging talks by prominent leaders of society. But the radio cannot supersede the newspaper. For the radio has its fixed time chart, one must listen to it. But a newspaper can be read at anytime according to one’s leisure and opportunity. So journalism is likely to flourish and develop, its scope for improvement being unlimited as the initiative of the competent journalist.
The profession of a journalist carries certain definite disadvantages too. For example the responsibility of a journalist is very high. He has to verify and make sure about the authenticity or correctness of very news or report which he receives. Sometimes he is placed in a very ticklish situation whenever wrecking news comes from distant places, for example, during war or when some report of a serious sabotage come from somewhere. At the nightly and odd hour, when there are no means for verifying and checking the accuracy of the report, the journalist is really in a predicament. He has to take decisions, sometimes very risky ones. Even a minor misrepresenting can cause much damage to the feelings of the people or of countries. The journalist has, therefore, to justify every minute of his working on the desk. He has to be busy with all the affairs. But considering this tough task indeed, they have little or no benefits of pension. Their working conditions are nearly miserable, ill or well, injured or intact a journalist must report duly unless the boss is very generous to grant him leave on the spur of the moment, and this rarely happens.
The profession of a journalist is very honorable, too. Among the top professions in the world are journalism and teaching (teaching in the college, not schools). These professions call for a high degree of thought, decisiveness and a positive attitude towards work. A little deficiency, inaccuracy or slackness may invite rebukes, and the person may be overthrown. Besides the original treasure of knowledge or training, one has to learn single moment. In case of other professions, original knowledge obtained at university is enough, but not so in the case of journalists or lectures. Many journalists win worldwide applause. Whenever they go, they receive honor. They are treated as men of real caliber. However, before deicing to become a journalist, one should consider all the pros and cons.