THE IMPACT OF REPORTORIAL TECHNIQUES ON READING AUDIENCE
Chapter One: Introduction
1.1 Background of the study
Information dissemination is a vital tool for awareness creation and development in every human society, whether such a society is traditional or modern in nature. Information is usually disseminated to the members of the public who are considered as the target audience in form of news broadcasting, which is made possible by different media organizations comprising of print and electronic media.
News broadcasting, as a medium of information dissemination is made possible, through active involvement of news writers and reporters who play major roles in different perspectives depending on the type of event to be reported at that point in time. Reporters ensure that they adopt and apply effective reportorial techniques to make their report accurate, unbiased and timely to meet the expectations of the members of the public who are the target reading audience.
This research will focus on the impact of reportorial techniques on the reading audience. This area of study is of interest to me because of my desire to determine the media-audience relationship by understanding the feelings, impression and perception, of members of the public who are considered to be the reading audience.
Generally, reporting is saddled with the responsibility of informing, educating and updating the members of the public who are the target reading audience, about news and events happening internationally, nationally, and locally. Reports are classified in different categories based on the situation and event to be reported on. The types of reports include: science and technology reports, political reports, police and crime reports, accident and disaster reports, environment reports etc.
Reporters make effective use of different reportorial techniques in order to report appropriately, based on the categories mentioned above and this eventually leads to specialization in such area of reporting. For reporters to specialize in specific area of reporting, there must meet one or two requirements, and as well comply strictly to the reportorial techniques of such type of report.
The duty of the reporter through the guidance of basic reportorial techniques, is to report the news for newspapers, magazines, websites, television, and radio. Reporters, spend a lot of time in the field, conducting interviews and investigating stories to enable them present a finished information for the consumption of the reading audience. The work of reporters is often fast paced, with constant demands to meet deadlines and to be the first reporter to publish a news story on a particular subject in other to satisfy the expectations of their target reading audience.
In his opinion, Rogers,(2001) observed that, for success to be achieved by meeting this huge responsibility that confronts the reporter, there is need for reporters to identify and adopt effective reportorial techniques in other to impact tremendously on the reading audience based on the category of report. The way people receive and learn about news varies based on many factors depending on the type of news, who is presenting the news and how such a reporter present the news . It depends on what they find most easily accessible and what they have access to.
Rogers, (2001), further identified effective reportorial techniques as basic methods that enables a reporter to be more effective and thorough in reporting such methods include; getting detail information relevant to the story, double-checking to ensure accuracy, avoidance of biasness on controversial subject or the subject of a dispute. Robinson, (2011), further highlighted the following; truthfulness, accuracy, objectivity, impartiality, fairness and public accountability as standards, reporters should apply to the acquisition of newsworthy information and its subsequent dissemination to the public. In this study, the researcher, intends to investigate techniques of reporting and the effect it would have on the reading audience.
1.2 Purpose of the study
The purpose of this study is to determine the impact of reportorial techniques on the reading audience. This study will also identify the basic users of reportorial techniques in different types of reporting.
This research will also indicate how reportorial techniques will enhance the quality and understanding of reports.
1.3 The scope of the study
The study focuses on the impact of reportorial techniques on reading audience of Akwa Ibom Broadcasting Corporation (AKBC) Uyo, Akwa Ibom state. This media organization is chosen because of ease in accessibility and also being an organization with a wider coverage of so many viewers with information seeking mind.
1.4 Significance of the study
This study will be of value to the print and electronic media organizations both public and private. It will help them to determine the media-audience relationship. This measurement can be achieved by understanding the impact of reportorial techniques on reading audience in Akwa Ibom Broadcasting Corporation (AKBC) Uyo, Akwa Ibom state.. The study will also arouse both states and Federal government interest to see the need in providing adequate resources to media organizations and also speed up the process of information dissemination concerning government policies and programmes. The study will also provide a platform for management of media organizations to direct resources appropriately in order to minimize poor reporting of information due to challenges of resources. The study can also be useful to researchers for further studies.
1.5 Research design and methodology
This research is library-based and explores extensively resources such as textbooks, journals, critical reviews and the internet. The researcher will also source for vital information from media houses as well as members of the general public.
1.6 Limitation of the study
The study is limited to media practitioners in the news room of AKBC, Uyo. the study will not include other reporters from else were in Nigeria due to lack of funds.
1.7 Definition of terms
For the purpose of clarity, the following terms which are used in the course of this research are hereby defined;
1.7.1 Audience: is a group of people who participate in a showor encounter a work of art, literature in which they are called readers, theatre, music in which they are called listeners(wilkipedia online dictionary).
1.7.2 Reportorial: an adjective pertaining to a reporter (dictionary.Com) 1.7.2 Technique: is a procedure to complete a task (wilkipedia online dictionary).
1.7.3 Report: is any finding in the form of writing, speech, television, or film made with specific intention of relaying information or recounting certain events in a widely presentable form (dictionary.Com).
1.7.4 Reading: It is a means of language acquisition, of communication, and of sharing information and ideas (dictionary.Com).