What Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts Do
Reporters that work in television set up and conduct interviews, which may be broadcast live or recorded for future broadcasts.
Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts inform the public about news and events happening internationally, nationally, and locally. They report the news for newspapers, magazines, websites, television, and radio.
Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts typically do the following:
- Research topics and stories that an editor or news director has assigned to them
- Investigate new story ideas and pitch ideas to editors
- Interview people who have information, analysis, or opinions about a story or article
- Write articles for newspapers, blogs, or magazines and write scripts to be read on television or radio
- Review articles for accuracy and proper style and grammar
- Develop relationships with experts and contacts who provide tips and leads on stories
- Analyze and interpret information to increase their audiences’ understanding of the news
- Update stories as new information becomes available
Reporters and correspondents, also called journalists, often work for a particular type of media organization, such as a television or radio station, newspaper, or website.
Those who work in television and radio set up and conduct interviews, which can be broadcast live or recorded for future broadcasts. These workers are often responsible for editing interviews and other recordings to create a cohesive story and for writing and recording voiceovers that provide the audience with the facts of the story. They may create multiple versions of the same story for different broadcasts or different media platforms.
Journalists for print media conduct interviews and write articles to be used in newspapers, magazines, and online publications. Because most newspapers and magazines have print and online versions, reporters typically produce content for both versions. This requires that they stay up to date with new developments of a story so that the online editions can be updated with the most current information.
Outlets are increasingly relying on multimedia journalists to publish content on a variety of platforms, such as a video content on the website of a daily newspaper. Multimedia journalists typically record, report, write, and edit their own stories. They also gather the audio, video, or graphics that accompany their stories.
Reporters and correspondents may need to maintain a presence on social media networking sites. Many use social media to cover live events, provide additional information for readers and viewers, promote their stations and newscasts, and engage with their audiences.
Some journalists, particularly those in large cities or large news organizations, cover a particular topic, such as sports, medicine, or politics. Journalists who work in small cities, towns, or organizations may need to cover a wider range of subjects.
Reporters who cover international news often live in another country and report news for a specific region of the world.
Some reporters—particularly those who work for print news—are self-employed and take freelance assignments from news organizations. Freelance assignments are given to writers on an as-needed basis. Because freelance reporters are paid for the individual story, they work with many organizations and often spend some of their time marketing their stories and looking for their next assignment.
Reporters also may collaborate with editors, photographers, videographers, and other journalists when working on a story.
Some people with a background as a reporter or correspondent work as postsecondary teachers and teach journalism or communications at colleges and universities.
Broadcast news analysts, also called anchors, lead news shows on television or radio. Others are news commentators, who analyze and interpret news stories and offer opinions. Some news commentators come from fields outside of journalism and have expertise in a particular subject—for example, politics, business, or medicine—and are hired on a contract basis to provide their opinion on the subjects being discussed.