Remote group project
We had a group project where we had to communicate and work together remotely. It was a different experience that I’ve had before since this was the first group project I’ve been in that was fully done online.  We made a group chat where we discussed different reporting tools. The easiest part of this was that we could always get in contact which each other instantly, and we could all work on the project at different times. The hardest part was to actually finish the slides because we were all working on the project at different times. It was a bit hard to choose one reporting tool out of many thousands reporting tools that exists out there. We finally chose one that we all agreed on, due to its easiness and availability for everyone. Group projects can be both hard and easy. We are all different and by having the chance to do the project online have made it possible to combine the best sides of us all. Some people work better by themselves and others prefer working together. We’ve learned a lot during these times where social distancing has been the first priority. It’s good to know that we now have alternative ways of doing group projects, even in a fully opened world in the future. We’re now able to combine the best we’ve learned from the pandemic and take advantage of it so we can combine it with how we used to work before the pandemic. As we say in Norway “all experiences are good experiences”
Finding and writing my first story
Finding a news story isn’t always the easiest, but when you start finding one story, usually other ideas will pop up too momentarily. My first news story was made based on what I heard from friends and neighbours. You just have to open your ears and try to find the values in each story you hear about. Everything has its values, you just have to look for them. The most time-consuming aspect about writing a story like this, in my experience, was to find interviewees and find time to have a chat. Not everybody has time instantly for a chat and that means that I had to find a suitable time where we could arrange a meeting. A story like this needed more than just one source which increased the time needed for making it. To deal with public affairs and looking for the right person to talk to in a company can also be a bit time-consuming. Especially when nobody answers the phone. The first tip I really found useful is: always call, don’t email. People tend to forget to answer an email, or they don’t find it worth replying. When you call you’ll experience that people have a tougher time declining than if it was on an email. A phone call is also more genuine and realistic than an email that could also be easily mistaken as a spam. I would definitely open my ears and eyes for even the smallest stories, in the future. You never know, something you won’t find interesting might be other one’s top story.  
Oil spillage kills wildlife, Los Angeles

As an online video story, it is perfect. The aspect ratio and format are specifically made for mobile device. The vast majority of all news consumers are reading or watching news through their phones which makes it necessary for news companies focus on designing the story for mobile devices first. For this online story they added a mysterious background music which took away some of the attention from the story itself. If usatoday would have had their own significant jingle, it would have worked a lot better than with this melody. I guess it’s a royalty free background melody that they used. Totally irrelevant for the story except from that they’re trying to emotionally connect viewers since it’s a very tragic case resulting in a lot of dead wildlife in the ocean. The story would have been a lot better if they took away the background music and replaced it with a voiceover instead. The natural sound is still present in the video which makes it easy to make better. It’s not easy to think about creating content mainly for mobile devices at first when we are working on a computer or laptop while we’re producing it. That’s why I’m going to take this into account and keep in mind that our mobile devices have its limitations that I need to consider, regarding i.e. format. Use big bold text on these online videos, in addition to a voiceover, to properly forward the news. This is because you want to produce a video for both those who have their speaker on and for those who are seeing the video on mute. ​​​​​​​
Stricter COVID restrictions in WeHo
Radio story by KCRW
This story was about stricter COVID rules in the West Hollywood area compared to the greater Los Angeles County. The story from KCRW was well told in an informal tone with a lot of information regarding the new restrictions. Those two aspects were definitely successful in this radio story. They answered a lot of questions that people most likely wanted to have clarified. They are trying to explain why West Hollywood wants to go its own way and it seems to be common that West Hollywood has always had their own way of doing things. It was very good to hear the comment from a restaurant owner where he said that their staff is trained in hospitality and not governmental health care works and that it’s very hard to put them in that position. They are ready for these new restrictions, they all just want to survive and get through this pandemic without having to shut down their businesses.

On the other hand, there are a lot of other aspects that could have been improved to make the story more appealing and interesting. There were no real interviews with people affected by these restrictions. They were just interviewing a reporter from a food and dining guide called Eater LA. This made it more difficult for us listeners to emotionally connect with the story. It became very distant. The interview session itself was most likely done in a studio, so there were no natural sounds from West Hollywood or at restaurants that could have improved the story to make it more interesting to listen to. It appeared like some restaurants didn’t want to comment in the news about this, for some reasons, but she tried to forward their comments even though it would be a lot better if it came from someone closer to the story itself.

It’s very clear for me that by emotionally connecting listeners to a story will automatically make the story more motivating for them. If we feel that the story is affecting us in some ways we will be far more interested in it. This is something I will be aware of when doing a future audio story, myself.​​​​​​​
Why is ethics important in journalism?
While working as a journalist this summer I came across an ethical problem related to a story we had to write and air on TV. The former president of South Africa was imprisoned this summer and that caused major riots and looting across South Africa. Many shops and stores were damaged and looted. The police were outnumbered by the amount of looters and the military had to join the police calming down the major riots. The footage we had available displayed a lot of gun shootings and violence towards civilians. We had to figure out which b-rolls and footage we could use to tell the story as on point as possible without displaying horrifying pictures unnecessarily. Furthermore, it is especially important for young journalists today to be aware of ethics since we grew up, and still grows up, in an era of constant public exposure. Our presence on social media is way more public than private, as many would believe. We are all constantly available through social media and the seamless flow of information spreading through the internet are so massive that it can be difficult to distinguish between reliable information or fake news. As a journalist you need to be aware of these pitfalls. Today’s technology makes it easier to manipulate videos and texts to make them look authentic. Sometimes it can be hard to distinguish between an authentic video and another one that has been tampered with. It’s so important that journalists, and especially young ones, are aware of this so that they recognize when something's not right . Accuracy is vital for keeping journalism’s reputation and trustworthiness at a high level.
More fast-food than healthy alternatives, well something’s fishy here.
When starting the pitching process, I figured out that writing a story is a bit of a job. There are a lot of aspects, appointments, and people that need to be involved in the process to make a good story. You have to be open for instant changes in the original plan in case one of your interviewees withdraws or cannot participate. Being well-prepared for such an outcome and having other relevant interviewees written down just in case is crucial for sparing time. I came up with this story after a few visits with my friends to the dining hall. It might just be the fact that I’m from a very fish-loving country that I noticed the lack of fish meals, however, I had to see if I could dig into this. Many of those who use the dining hall have just moved out from their home and can’t make their own food at all times. For them, this is the only offer they have for dinner. Do they also think that this is a problem or am I just exaggerating this issue since I’m from another culture?

To be able to create a story based on this issue I need to involve at least one expert that can, by their knowledge on the field, evaluate the dining hall's offers. The company behind the dining hall, Aramark must of course be able to explain their side of the story so they’re not incorrectly accused of not providing healthy alternatives. Last but not least, I would need some new students that have the first-hand experience with the dining hall. I need to evaluate all my findings and create a story that is as nuanced as possible. Google was my best friend in finding the correct people for this task. When dealing with another case I remember reading an e-mail where the company behind the dining hall was mentioned. You never know what kind of information you stumble across that might be useful sometime, this was just a coincidence – but exactly what I needed for this case. A very important skill needed for such a fact-based story as this one is creating it attention-grabbing. There are many ways to do so. For instance, good photos and making the story relevant for those who read it by emotionally involve them. Maybe this issue is something that can affect them too?
My thoughts about journalism
Journalism is so much more than just writing and interviewing people for news stories. Journalism consists of so much more than that. Communication is a huge factor in journalism. The way we interact with each other through media and/or face to face is something that is vital for journalism. I've spent most of my youth in a theater group where we had lots of fun on stage entertaining people. As an actor you need to express your script clearly and at a certain tempo so that people have time to process what you're saying. It would have been difficult to be an actor if I would have been shy. You can't be afraid of people. The same resemblance can be drawn into the journalistic world. You need to be able to communicate in a certain way that you make sure that everyone understands you. As one of my former teachers at high school used to say "misunderstand me correctly".
There are so many advantages by taking journalism classes, even though I might not work as a journalist in the future. Knowing how to communicate for a crowd can be an advantage for many different positions in different companies. It'll also make me confident about how I behave among other people. Never say never. I got the opportunity to work as a TV-reporter in the breaking department at NRK Nyheter (Norwegian public broadcaster) during summer 2021 and learned a lot about what it takes to create a TV story. I had to think of what's most important to tell in a story, how to tell it and keep in mind all the ethical factors that sometimes must be taken to account when dealing with a difficult case (i.e accidents, deaths etc). I also learned techniques on how to prepare and present a story on live tv where anything can happen. There's nothing wrong about being nervous, it's all about how you master your mistakes on a live TV if somethings happen.
You see, communication and journalism goes hand in hand. I live for the philosophy that every knowledge you gain in life is useful someday. Journalism can be useful for a lot of things, not only for media. It's all about how you look at it and how you interpret journalism. 

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