IJ’s Chronicles

My dear brother/sister in journalism, I hope this meets you well.

I write this open letter in love and in emulation of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Being serious on the job or being resourceful is not really about how long you spent “working on a story” but how well and timely the story is. The story must serve its purposes) and be timely for it to be news.

Nobody gives others an award for too much suffering, so, don’t look down on others who do their jobs faster and easier than you do as being less journalists when in actuality, they may be award-winning.

That you spend eternity after an assignment to get to a convenient place, gradually unpack your native doctor bag, bring out your laptop while throwing banter, plug your chargers, open your laptop with fanfare, turn it on and wait for it to boot, set your face to look serious enough, then start typing and then probably complain about the network before sending your story, does not make you the only hardworking journalist.

That you all gather in a place in the name of “writing story”, then end up sending stories with the same lead and line to your different media houses (because the story was actually written by one person), does not make you more serious.
Total waste of man hours and juicy story.

Do you know that some people start writing their stories as the assignment is on? Some have their captions, lead and closing paragraphs before the end of the assignment. Some finish the whole story in their heads right there and then.
They probably input figures and crosscheck facts and send out their stories a few minutes after.

Do you know that your phone can do virtually everything you do on your laptop when it comes to filing your story? Do you know that the lady you saw “pressing her phone while the Commissioner was talking” was actually sending her story to be quickly uploaded on her medium’s website with details coming later or a broadcast media to beat the deadline for a news belt?

Are you aware that with the competition with online media now, if you don’t upgrade, you may become redundant except of course they are keeping you with the hope that you would bring adverts?

For you Oga presenters in the studio bootlicking politicians in the name of being serious on the job, do you watch your counterparts in the western world? Do you see their demeanor even in the presence of powerful figures? You that will be calling the Commissioner “Sir” and Onitsha Importer on air, did you watch Trevor Noah with even a POTUS? Christiane Amanpour? Richard Quest?

By the way, why should I have a Blackberry that I cannot use to quickly transfer my video files to my head office?

What’s the essence of the iPhone, Samsung, Oppo, Tecno, Infinix etc I have if I can’t prepare a FULL bulletin with them from the comfort of my home? Why can’t the presenters read the news from their phones on radio?

My dear brothers and sisters, continue waiting for me to appear serious like you? Ayam coming. But if I ever own a media house, I’ll not employ someone who cannot be spontaneous, someone who enjoys doing things the hard way, someone who doesn’t embrace modern gadgets and ways of doing things.

No wonder you guys still insist on physical impromptu meetings when deals worth billions are being discussed virtually these days.

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