What do you expect from us?

Hi – I’m Tolu Adeoye and I’m one of a new group of trainees on the BBC’s Journalism Trainee Scheme. We’re all pictured here with Helen Boaden, Director, BBC News. The programme is designed to attract people to journalism who have not trained, or worked, as broadcast journalists before – recruiting people who can use their experiences and skills to reach diverse audiences. Krupa and Trish, who work on World Have your Say, were trainees on the 2008 scheme. We’d love to hear what World Have Your Say listeners want and expect from new BBC journalists.

There are fifteen of us and we’ll be based across the UK from Plymouth in the south west of England, to Newcastle in the north east. There will be a trainee in each of Belfast, Northern Ireland; Cardiff, Wales; and Glasgow, Scotland. Most of us will work in regional news but there is also a specialist trainee covering politics, two sport trainees and one World Service trainee. We spent three weeks at the BBC’s College of Journalism where we had basic training in story writing, ethics and law.

We are all incredibly different, with varied experience and character, but what we have in common is our passion for journalism, and an enthusiasm for finding good stories for a wide audience. Amongst us is Ross, who has travelled to over 100 countries and worked as a travel writer for the past 11 years; Zak, a graduate of Arabic, Islamic and Middle Eastern studies, who’s lived in Lebanon and Israel; and Leila, who has worked for Amnesty International and in the UK’s Liberal Democrat Policy and Research Unit, on the Foreign Affairs portfolio.

We’ve just started our first placement in online journalism. In June we move to radio and finally we have TV placements starting in September. The scheme lasts for a year, but we all hope it’s just the beginning of a long career with the BBC.

We met Mark and Ros for an insightful discussion on the importance of audience driven content. So here is your chance to tell us what you would want from us in our careers as BBC journalists.

Tolu Adeoye

24 Responses to “What do you expect from us?”

  1. 1 T
    March 25, 2010 at 14:27

    Be willing to not settle for the stanadard quo. I’m not sure how much leeway BBC management will give you. But push for it as much as you can.

  2. 2 Jaime Saldarriaga
    March 25, 2010 at 14:57

    I would expect from you to be good journalists. Should I expect something else?

  3. 3 Cabe UK
    March 25, 2010 at 15:08

    Hi Tolu and welcome!

    From any journalist I would expect total honesty!! – and for them to be well informed on both sides of a story and then tell it like it is without exploiting anything or anyone just for the sake of that ‘story’…
    I absolutely hate tabloid news and never read the newspapers because I know things are not fairly represented and that there is a big percentage of fakery going on in some stories, ie: … a Palace insider has said that – blah blah ” etc …. (sorry, but I don’t think so, to me that would be a made-up story to create a missing ‘link’….)
    Most stories may be true but may also have been ‘bent’ or manipulated in a certain direction to get the reader to take a side, which is exploitation of everything and is training the public to ‘want’ to read about it, because the scandal or novelty factor of that story has purpously been made irrisistable…
    I don’t think the Beeb have the same problems as they are quite honest in their reporting, although their News-readers may sometimes need to be careful they don’t convey their own feelings about what they are reading about, by their tone or stance etc… I do believe knowledge is power and if people are fed the wrong knowledge then no one has Any power to do anything!
    I’m sure you’ll do a great job and have a great time doing it! All the Best to you all…

  4. 4 Ibrahim in UK
    March 25, 2010 at 15:17

    Congratulations to all who’ve joined.
    What would we like from you?

    – tell us the whole truth without agenda (whether personal or corporate)

    – give us some context to the news so we can understand how and why the situation has arisen.

    – balance the opinions, so that the majority is presented as the majority, and the minority is presented as the minority

    – Tell us some good news too! 🙂

    – Have fun and Good luck

  5. 5 Robyn Carter, Lexington, KY
    March 25, 2010 at 15:37

    Objective reporting and check your facts. Something the Media in the US doesn’t practice these days. I look forward to your reports. Good luck.

  6. March 25, 2010 at 15:52

    A good journalist should keep an open mind and should be able to sift the grain from the chaff. Giving a balanced picture and searching for the unadulterated truth should be the professional mission. The journalist should provide different perspectives and encourage readers to develop the critical sense through their comments. The journalist should keep away from sleaze and should have very high bench-mark standards of ethical reporting. The mission statement should be ethical balanced reporting with a view to educate, entertain and stimulate the mind. All this requires clarity of mind and humour.

  7. March 25, 2010 at 16:17

    I expect unbiased representation of events as well as respect for the viewer’s opinions. Welcome on board, i know you will enjoy your stay in this world class institution.

  8. March 25, 2010 at 16:18

    I can only reiterate what others have already said.Truth is an excelent starter,but you must have learned that at journalist college.Don’t take the Press Asscociation’s word for it,do your own research.Journalism is a tough old world so I wish you all the very best of luck.

  9. 9 nora
    March 25, 2010 at 16:41

    Dig beneath the surface and follow your nose. Some stories will hit your nostrils and you will know there is more there.

    When you believe in your story, sell it so hard to management that they must take it to air, lawyers be damned.

    Don’t assume that the ‘sides’ know the facts–the real discussion starts on a bedrock of fact, so do your homework.

    More Latin America, more Africa, more Asia beyond China.

    Refuse to chase fat people, smokers or Tiger Woods and call it journalism.

  10. 10 Kenneth Ingle
    March 25, 2010 at 21:15

    I wish you all a good start with the BBC. What I would like you to do, is not to believe everything thing that is said, before you have done your own research. For more than seventy years, I have been listening to the BBC and well remember Mrs Mop and “Funf” calling. With Thomas Handley’s Itma, that was good down to earth fun in times of suffering throughout Europe. There is however another side to the BBC, The archives, a source of information which most of us are unable to examine or use. Please make use of that information, because much of what is told about European history today, could never stand up against the truth which people of my age lived through. Good luck to you all!

  11. 11 MINA
    March 25, 2010 at 22:51

    how can i join this group?

  12. 12 Alex V - Chicago
    March 26, 2010 at 00:42

    Welcome! Be truthful and get honest information. Avoid bias.

    Good luck!

  13. 13 Jayson Rex
    March 26, 2010 at 01:14

    We all expect you to be true and honest and NEVER spin the news – a recently acquired habit of many news media, including some old and “reputable” organizations. Integrity should never be for sale!

  14. 14 Subhash C Mehta
    March 26, 2010 at 07:13

    I expect you to be brave enough to always face & report the truth.

  15. March 27, 2010 at 14:55

    I expect intelligence, integrity and professionalism. Journalism does not HAVE to be
    “infotainment” – if you want respect you have to treat your craft, and your listeners, with respect. You don’t have to cover the school bake sale on the same level as the major headline of the day but just remember that EVERY story is important to someone.

  16. 16 Cheshire Pete
    March 28, 2010 at 11:27

    To know the difference between things that are worth reporting, and things PR people want reporting. The news suffers far too much from the later. We need journalists who are not lazy and don’t just regurgitate planted feeds because it is easy.

  17. 17 Cheshire Pete
    March 28, 2010 at 11:34

    And if you want something else to consider, remember that other countries have the same problems as us, and many deal with them better than we do. Do not treat the UK as if the rest of the World is unimportant. Newspaper journalists seem to try to keep UK readers in a collapsing bubble, let the BBC open the World up.

  18. 18 Agilu Jalloh
    March 28, 2010 at 14:31

    Looking at the photo,i may confess i see a group of prolific journalists and i will say the BBC has been producing the Maradonas and Pelle’s in Journalism and therefore i expect the Best.I also expect a journalism giving well sieved and unbiased news.I expect a group of open minded journalist.I expect a group of journalist that will excavate news from every angle in the cosmos,from the shanty towns in Freetown to the Casinos in Las vegas.As part of your mission I want to suggest an objective, design a documentary title “Life in Sierra Leone”it will for sure interest millions of listeners worldwide.
    Good luck and welcome onboard the flight 94.3 BBC Airways. Thank you

  19. March 28, 2010 at 15:26

    I am hoping you will be questioning the status of women in our so called modern liberal democracy here in the UK and fighting to bring to the attention of the world the plight of women and girls who are the most abused people in the world today East and West I hope that as women you will stand together in the fight against misogyny for all women.

    You could start here in the UK and draw attention to the gender apartheid system of law we are presently operating here whereby you can with impunity slit the thoughts of recalcitrant teenage Asian girls, force them to marry, ignore polygamy and most horrific of all, mutilate the genitals of Black Somali girls, British citizens, without one single prosecution ever.

    The patriarchs, indigenous and ethnics seem to have carved out a nice little niche for themselves. It goes like this!

    “You don’t call us racist and we will allow you to treat your women in the manner to which you are accustomed”

    This lily livered covert deal was set up to prevent male-on-male violence by selling out on women and girls. Its appalling. It’s time in this the 21stC to deal with misogyny in the same determined manner we have dealt with racism. The start is to raise consciousness. You have the broadcasting power to do it, so lets see you draw attention to it and get it stopped.

  20. 20 Cheshire Pete
    March 28, 2010 at 17:23

    If you want a third thing to remember to stop annoying people, please remember that the English language is not yours to mess about with. Leave out the Americanisms, the mispronunciations, the cliches and the neologisms, and especially the spin words that don’t have precise meanings. Plus the padding words and phrases, otherwise you will be holed up between a rock and a hard place, and the result will be too close to call.

    ‘Before going shopping’ is so much more precise than ‘ahead of enjoying the experience at the retail outlet.’ and it uses less electricity to type.

    And don’t believe that the public actually want to see you standing at the scene of whatever, wherever, in the rain, to add nothing to the story that could not have been said in the studio.

  21. 21 Prince
    March 28, 2010 at 19:31

    Guys when i listen to your news,correspondence and to your sports commentary men it is wonderful.But i want u 2 come 2 nigeria in fm frequency.

  22. 22 PJ P
    March 29, 2010 at 11:34

    Thank you for inviting comments on this important work.

    This is what I would like to see re journalists:-

    Honesty, integrity, a seeking after truth, an avoidance of irresponsible reporting that would cause serious offence on sensitive issues, ie ideally peacemaking. An avoidance of cliches and of any coarse or bad wording – help raise standards. See your work as journalists as ‘vocation’ instead of jobs for money – a serving of the greater Good.

  23. 23 A R Shams
    March 29, 2010 at 12:19

    Excellent journalists never compromise in communicating the truth and reality.

  24. 24 Cabe UK
    March 29, 2010 at 15:03

    Referring to ‘Cheshire Pete’s’ observation on wording – I suppose realistically there are only so many words you can put in before either the newspapers themselves, become too large to carry and the Worlds forests can no longer sustain them, Or the print gets so small that in the end, you just can’t see it! Newspaper ‘short-hand’ is acceptable as long as it makes grammatical sense. What I would object to, is manipulating those words in such a way that they contain auto-suggestion.. The public are not that stupid and know when they are being hoodwinked (unless of course they read one of the rubbish sex-n’-scandal tabloids !) 😉

    I suppose it also depends what kind of journalist you want to be (You didn’t say) ? If you end up as a news-reader, then I’m not sure I want to be ‘entertained’ ! (as another poster requested) – I would much perfer reporting based only on all the facts there are – however incomplete.. so that the truest picture of something unfolds.. And, if you do get to read the news – The Beeb used to put on some GOOD news at the end of the programme, so please ask if they will do that again? .. (- However hard, that bit of ‘good’ news may be to find (!) …. The world can’t only be made up of bad news !!)
    Good Luck!

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