And You Are?

Sometimes we get a little ahead of ourselves (damn idiomatic phrases). Receiving a new assignment from a client is always exciting news; it means a bill can be paid. Jumping the gun (another fail) may lead to unnecessary challenges ahead.

This sounds basic, but we must always think about the individual we’re reaching out to when inquiring about a particular topic. Do they know who you are? Do they know the publication you’re working with? Keep your image the same across all platforms to provide the entire story to the interviewee. Think about yourself in their situation: Wouldn’t you be a bit skeptical after receiving an email from someone or a brand you’re not familiar with?

Present the facts in the beginning to ease their worries. Ask them if they have any questions, and be more than willing to answer their concerns. Following this approach will surely limit the chances of any clouds on the horizon (sigh) from arising.

 

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Interviewing While Airborne

Using a smartphone to record interviews is one way for journalists of this decade to document comment from sources — and many in the trade are adopting this technique. This method has the potential to be intrusive to a reporter’s privacy — unless spontaneous sexting is highly unlikely to occur.

There’s no way of telling what will come across your phone while interviewing a source for a story. Will a Twitter notification from Lady Gaga pop up on your screen? What about an inappropriate text message from your friend? How about a call from your mother (think about your phone vibrating across the table into your interviewee’s lap)? Minimizing embarrassment is the key to maintaining your reputation, integrity and job.

Switching to airplane mode assists with preventing potential journalistic missteps from happening by disabling a device’s signal transmitting functions. In simple terms: You won’t be able to receive phone calls, text messages or notifications from any of your social media accounts. Your recordings will go uninterrupted.

So do yourself a favor before opening up your personal life to sources: Take your interview into the sky with a simple swipe of the finger.