This story was first published in the Walkley Magazine in December 2016. Illustration by Rocco Fazzari
It was a beautiful question, sharp and open-ended, challenging and necessary. She was a Chinese journalism student, maybe 19 or 20 years old, but this was the question of a veteran, a gentle query from someone wise enough to know that sometimes the best way to get a piece of them is to give a piece of you.
“How do I be brave?” she asked.
In the first half of my life as a journalist I was probably too shit-scared to ask any newsroom…
Surveys are a constant part of the news cycle. They promise us a snapshot of our nation. As journalists, we rely on them — and the statistics we use can change opinions and drive policymaking. Yet news stories about even the highest quality surveys can lack context and mislead the public. Here, statisticians and survey experts give us their top tips on sussing out surveys and using them wisely.
Journalists who are tentative about numbers sometimes take surveys at face value as authoritative. But they’re sources like any others. And all surveys have limitations. …
When I reflect on a half century career as one of the reptiles, probably like the rest of you, I am pained by the demagogues and the dissemblers of self-interest as public interest, who proliferate the media landscape. I am more than wearied by the defamation decades; my death by a thousand courts, which as it happens, at an age when I qualify for the Astra Zeneca jab, are ongoing.
For all that, never once have I lost faith in the worth of journalism and its contribution to good citizenship and humanity.
My best teacher, my mother Olga, an alert…
Michael Roddan’s exclusive investigation into the culture of the 170-year-old wealth management company AMP directly resulted in the resignations of some of the most powerful men in corporate Australia and bought the #MeToo movement into the boardroom.
Roddan’s series of investigations into sexual harassment at AMP included 17 front-page stories for The Financial Review between July 1 and August 24, 2020. He achieved unprecedented reporting of the internal backlash surrounding Boe Pahari’s promotion, including highly detailed arguments between executive-level women in closed-door meetings. …
In journalism we often say, it’s who you know, not what you know. Who you know can determine whether you get the scoop, the leak, or the exclusive. And it can also determine whether you get ahead in your career.
There is no longer an argument: As Reuters reaffirmed this month, newsrooms globally are more male, more able-bodied, more white, than the communities we report to and about. But there’s one more gaping hole in Australian newsrooms that’s unacceptable: socio-economic disadvantage.
Journalism has a class problem. Our newsrooms are disproportionately middle-class, and it’s dooming journalism to irrelevance.
It wasn’t always…
Putting pen to paper for an explosive report that tears at the reputation of an Australian legal titan requires courage and meticulous research, especially when the target is eminent judicial figure and former High Court judge Dyson Heydon.
Jacqueline Maley and Kate McClymont spent two years investigating claims that the former High Court judge had sexually harassed a number of young female associates during his tenure. …
Some of my earliest childhood memories are of my father being violent.
I can still vividly recall the time he threw my mother into a window and when he threatened to kill the family by burning down our house while we were still inside.
The memories are forever seared into my past — psychological scars that will never fade.
Every day my father made sure my mother, Zahra and my two sisters, Atena and Anita and I knew that he was the head of our household and that if we disobeyed his authority, there would be grave consequences.
David Rowe, The Australian Financial Review, “Thoughts and Prayers”
In his entry statement about this cartoon, David Rowe said: “The best cartoons, for me, are when you’re hesitant to actually submit because they’re on the edge and they’re a gut response. The ‘Thoughts and Prayers’ cartoon was pretty damning early on but, following the Hawaii escapade and what transpired later, it only grew in power.”
The judges agreed, “In a dramatic and cleverly realised cartoon, David Rowe encapsulated the Prime Minister’s futile attempts to redress his earlier absence from the bushfire crisis, while ridiculing his platitudes as he faced the…
Today marks 10 years since The Conversation website was launched in Melbourne. It set out with a mission of improving public discourse by encouraging experts to engage with the media. It does this by teaming professional journalists with academic experts to help them share their knowledge directly with the public.
In just 10 years this unique approach of publishing news analysis written by experts has taken off across the world, with teams in the US and UK, France, Spain, Africa, Canada, Indonesia and New Zealand. …
Marc Fennell, Ninah Kopel and Joel Stillone, The Feed, SBS, “Stuffed: Inside Australia’s Biggest Museum Heist”
It may have been the biggest museum theft in Australia’s history, with more than 2,000 artefacts stolen between 1996 and 2003. But since headlines like “Bug man accused of $1m museum thefts” circulated in the early 2000s, the story was left for dead — until the team from The Feed tracked him down. Through a creative visual treatment, artful editing and a considered personal touch, “Stuffed” balanced an Australian historical event on the knife-edge of conflicting perspectives.
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