Sunday, September 14, 2008

Mobile Journalism Kits

After looking at a few of the outstanding portfolios provided by, I found myself particularly drawn to Rachel Youens, an Assistant Editor and Staff Reporter for the Community Impact Newspaper in Austin, Texas. It is probably her young, refreshing perspective on local happenings, which stimulates my sensibilities the most. In my opinion, her mobile journalism kit probably resembles something like Mary Poppin’s famous bottomless bag. I would imagine Ms. Youens spends most of her reporting time hitting the pavement on the streets of Austin to collect information and new sources. In her bag of journalistic goodies, my perception is she brings along with her a minimum of an audio and video recorder, her iPod, a digital camera, and a laptop complete with only the latest software for html formatting, photo editing and internet compression software. I could not find any relevant photos, although I did find a video of her current work (below).

Rachel Youens website:

Example of Rachel Youens current work:

I found the backpack of young college journalist Jared Silfies compelling to say the least. While other classmates have condemned him as nothing more than out of touch with present day students and journalists, I on the other hand, find him inspiring. His mobile journalism kit reminds me of all the old movies I watched as a kid when journalism was all about being at the right place at the right time. I still feel largely this is the way journalism still works today. After all, if I as a reporter get a scoop and I have nothing with me to prepare a package or even a report at the least, someone else just got my story. I am sure my producer or editor would not be pleased with me if this were to happen. On the subject regarding whether Mr. Silfies (or even myself) should carry around a copy of “Elements of Style,” I say, why not? It never hurts to be prepared. I think by carrying around this book, Silfies is trying to separate himself from every other journalist trying to catch the same story.

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