Tuesday, January 1, 2008

I am a Journalist

It's been almost a year since I started this blog.
"I am a Poet."
That's what I wrote in one of my early entries.
Today, as we enter a new year (it's about midnight in Tokyo Jan. 1, 2008 turning to Jan. 2, 2008 as I write this)
I want to say this:
I am a Journalist.
What you do everyday is what defines who you are.
This blog made me realize the importance of my writing outside my everyday reporting on the job.
But it also made me realize more than ever how much I believe in reporting.
I want to do my best to contribute what I can, given my background and my talent.
This blog gave me an outlet that was so close at hand yet so public and intimate at the same time, and helped me reconnect with poets and creative writers.
But it helped my job as well: People gave me ideas for stories and feedback for the writing I did on my job.
I am after all the same Person.
And in the end, it is about Writing _ not just the Craft but what's involved as Personal Belief/Conviction/All its Mystery/the Fun of it.
Journalism is changing rapidly, with everything becoming faster, niche and direct.
But I believe that ultimately the person/writer behind the journalism is going to become more important than ever.
Of course, we must deliver on the accuracy, speed and context.
But we must also have _ for the lack of a better word _ character.
And I'm not talking about reporters' reading the news on TV with authoritative voices.
Accountability, credibility, integrity, creativity _ the human side of the writer/journalist is going to count in the end to our readers.
Otherwise, all they would have would be the headlines/press releases/blurbs.
What other than the writer makes one news story different from another story?

4 comments:

Edo said...

I just wanted to let you know that you inspire me to write better everyday. Thanks for the words of encouragement even if you thought your words weren't. When you speak, we listen. Well, at least I do anyways =) Happy New Year! Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu!

YURI KAGEYAMA said...

Thanks for the encouragement.

naoto2begunyam said...

Ohayougozaimasu, Yuri-san.
I am Naoto, a budding news reporter working as an assistant at the WSJ Tokyo. I was browzing the internet, and came across this website "My Eyes Tokyo" yesterday, and found your interview. It was really interesting. Your thoughts on journalism and its adaptation to the one-line environment have given me a lot of food for thought, as I hope to become a fully-fledged reporter in my own right, not just an assistant, down the road. But more than anything, I like what you said about being a whole and international person and sensitive to what is going on not just in Japan but in the rest of the world. Thank you for sharing your views. I hope to see you in person while covering news at a press conference or something in the future. Again, many thanks! PS: your ex-collegue, Ms. Tabuchi, has joined us since this Monday. She sits right behind me.

YURI KAGEYAMA said...

Small world _ or yet small cyberworld.
I hope to see you soon.
Please do come and say hey if you happen to see me.
And regards to Hiroko.
Stay well.
Yuri