MetaMedia: Perspective is key

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 Staff

Staff

Journalists connect the dots in a story when they look at everyone’s perspective.

When people say, “There are two sides to every story,” they are wrong. There are actually more than 7 billion, at least one for every human on the planet.

It is a reporter’s job to figure out what actually happened, which requires talking to numerous sources. However, those sources might not know exactly what happened themselves.

Sources have their own view of what happened.

Beliefs can alter what they think they saw.

Reporters interview primary sources, secondary sources, officials and review documents to try to get to the bottom of a story.

When a person does not want to tell their side of the story, then their perspective is lost, which may be critical information missing in the story.

That is why reporters are constantly asking for more information from various sources.

A reporter simply cannot trust or write off a story of one person’s statement because that person could lie, be mistaken or have a memory lapse.

Once a story is published, readers can conjure up their own opinions of what happened.

No one opinion or perspective is right; it is just one of the many things reporters have to consider in a story.

Reporters do not ask questions to pester a source; they ask questions to get one more perspective of the 7 billion available.

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