And the worst job is … news reporter. Mmmh is it?

by Veronica Sanchez

Being a farmer, a dishwasher or a maid is much better than pursuing stories for a media outlet. At least it is for Career.Cast.com, which classified the newsreporter job as the worst for second year.

For the firm based in California, this is the most badly in terms of environment, income, outlook and stress, the criteria they used to rank the jobs from better to worse.

According to the report published last week, the “shrinking of the newsrooms, the reduction of the budgets and the competition from the Internet” have toughened the conditions in the newspapers.

But do not think that this low rank is just for the reporters. Just 12 positions above them the US website placed the photojournalists.

If this is not discouraging enough for all the aspiring journalists (as for the ones that are already in the business this is not a surprise) both professions also appear in the top 10 of the most stressful jobs of the US website of this year: the photojournalists in the 7th position and the news reporters in the 8th.

Nader and Ahmed, butcher of the Bazar Vest. Part of a photostory to be exhibited in Aarhus (DK). By Veronica Sanchez

Nader and Ahmed, butcher of the Bazar Vest. Part of a photostory to be exhibited in Aarhus (DK). By Veronica Sanchez

“Newsrooms around the country are cutting back on staff and requiring reporters to work longer hours at lower pay, and be masters of new online technologies.

“These changes add to the stress of a job that already carries the responsibility of working under the strictest of deadlines as well as a high public profile”, states the 10 most stressful jobs report.

Having performed as a reporter nearly four years in a newspaper I cannot denied that the daily job is full of stress – and that it increases during campaigns, natural disasters, or even worse during periods of violence -. I cannot ignore either that the salary, if not bad, is not proportional to the amount of hours worked and that the outlook in terms of growth inside the media or in the salary is not very promising. Journalists know well that this is a long career and that their efforts are rewarded after years in the ground.

It is true too that the profession impacts in other aspects of life just as family, friends or couple, even health, a topic that is already quite trite.

But, yes, in deed, one day you found your mobile with more number of sources than of people you know, you arrive to the dinners with your friends when they are about to ask for the bill, you have fast food as Christmas lunch with the colleagues while all your family is celebrating together. One day you can end in the emergency area of the hospital for not have eaten the whole day because… you forgot!

When I arrived to Aarhus last September, I was looking forward to experience again a life without this rush of finding a story and distance myself from those circunstancies. My aim was to concentrate only in the studies and to absorb all the culture of this country. I wanted time to reflect about how much I wanted to keep working in the “worst job” in my future.

If it was hard to detach myself from the newspaper as I was always analysing of what and how news were published, I can say that I managed to do it at some extent. (I repeat at some extent as on the 26 of December, while I was in Milan, I found myself forwarding my former editor one bulletin that I thought it was an “exclusive”, and just Sunday night I dreamt that I was back in the journal ).

However, 7 months after having this break of the news routine, I could say that two of the most exciting chapters of my Aarhus life happened when I got back into my role of newsreporter and explored a new one: the photojournalist.

Ahmed, a 21 years old butcher. Photo to be part of a photostory to be exhibited in Aarhus (DK). Veronica Sanchez

Ahmed, a 21 years old butcher. Photo to be part of a photostory to be exhibited in Aarhus (DK). Veronica Sanchez

The photojournalist job let me approach myself in one of the topics I like the most: migration. It has given me the opportunity to have a glance in the life of two young boys whose parents immigrated in the late 80´s due to conflicts in their Middle Eastern countries.

After spending one of my Easter days at the butchery with Nader, his dad and his uncle; Ahmed, and Adam, I felt full of energy, happy, grateful, a feeling which I have just had after successful coverages just as the visit of the Pope Benedict XVI. The day was so interesting learning about their job, looking at the dynamic among them and listening to their issues, that I actually took with fun the fact that my bike was stolen outside the bazar.

In the other hand, the news reporter role has let me discover the charm of the job of an editor. That job that I always told myself that I would never do it has resulted to be fascinating. Reading others works, making them look nicer, listening to proposals and giving some suggestions to focus the stories has been a very rewarding experience as I am also getting to know more myself. (You can have a look at this project in insightoutmagazine.wordpress.com)

For all this, in my own ranking, the jobs of news reporter and photojournalist are on the top best. No matter the truth in the Carreer Cast report, I am more in the side of García Márquez who has said in 1996 that journalism is the best profession of the world.

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