Good reporters should have a good network of good sources,  Filipino reporter says

Good reporters should have a good network of good sources, Filipino reporter says

by Alvin Hui Chunlin Anyone can be an investigative reporter if equipped with intense curiosity and a strong willingness to follow through, a reporter for the Philippine Daily Inquirer said at a forum last Thursday. Nancy C. Carvajal won the SOPA Award for journalist of the year for an investigative series on political corruption. She gathered sworn statements from victims and verified their truthfulness with police, she said. She also obtained a hard disk with over 22,000 financial files. “Admittedly, an investigative journalist has to be confronted with political pressure, harassment and intimidation,” Carvajal said. “But, if fear compels me to stop the investigation, who will reveal the truth to the public?” Carvajal is one of six SOPA Award-winning journalists speaking at a forum at Hong Kong Baptist University this week. Do not rely on a single source, Carvajal said. “If you cannot get the information from a source, be inspired to find another one,” she said. “For the ones unwilling to share, ask them the reason, which may be of great help to find the right ones.” The police usually have the “juiciest” details and their information can grasp public attention, she said. Carvajal said that investigative reporters should build trust with their sources. “It is also important to remind our sources that the information they provide may put them in danger,” she said. “We should respect requests from our sources in order to protect them. Also, many sources want their stories to come out,” Carvajal said. “Actually, everyone wants to share,” Carvajal...
Calling someone an outsider removes their right to speak, Beijing-based correspondent says

Calling someone an outsider removes their right to speak, Beijing-based correspondent says

By Li Bingcun A Beijing-based Hong Kong-born correspondent for The New York Times said she has been refused interviews in China because she is an “outsider.” Such “inside” and “outside” concepts remove people from the debate and deprive them of their right to speak, Didi Kirsten Tatlow said. “Should we say to the working guys in Zhuhai, ‘Oh your opinion isn’t important because the rest of you are in Beijing?’’,” she said. Tatlow writes about social issues in China for The New York Time’s Sinosphere Blog and has won five SOPA Awards for her reporting. She spoke at a forum for SOPA Award winning journalists at Hong Kong Baptist University last week. The perspective is hard to change, but the government has also realized that having an outside perspective is sometimes valuable. “The solution lies in communication with both insiders and outsiders,” she...
Stereotypes add humor to cartoons, award-winning political cartoonist at the SCMP says

Stereotypes add humor to cartoons, award-winning political cartoonist at the SCMP says

By Aki Juan Shen Hong Kong’s most well known editorial cartoonist said he draws what he cares about and what is funny. He said he likes to use stereotypes but keeps it nice and not insulting. “You can’t draw anyone the same,” Harry Harrison, the South China Morning Post’s principal political cartoonist, said in a lecture at Hong Kong Baptist University last Thursday. Harrison moved from England, where he was born, to Hong Kong in 1994. For the past 21 years, he has been freelancing for different publications, including the SCMP and TIME, and has also illustrated children’s books. “Cartoons have a very strong tradition in Hong Kong,” he said Harrison is the only editorial cartoonist among the six award-winning journalists attending the HKBU-SOPA Award Winners Forum this week. Harrison sense of humor came from having to make friends quickly and trying to make them laugh, he said. As a child he moved frequently because his father was in the British Air Force. He has lived in Libya, Singapore and Sydney. Harrison’s Hong Kong studio in Central is full of his favorite things, he said, including a portrait of Mao Zedong They give him inspiration when he’s drawing, he said. Sometimes he combines two stories, such as Donald Tsang indictment and the Swiss tourist who was ripped off by a taxi driver, into one carton. That particular cartoon wasn’t published for legal reasons, he said. “I don’t self-censor,” he said. “The SCMP stands behind me.” Harrison’s former editor at the SCMP, CK Lau, Associate Dean of the School of Communication, said he tried to not interfere with him when...
Animated news a new way to tell stories, Taiwanese reporter says

Animated news a new way to tell stories, Taiwanese reporter says

By Zhang Jun Dummies are not dummies; they just need something to trigger their interest, a Taiwanese journalist said in a lecture last Wednesday. “Mainstream media need a new way to communicate with their new audience,” said Yi-Shan Chen, deputy editor at Taiwan’s CommonWealth Magazine and an instructor at National Taiwan University’s School of Journalism,. Chen is one of the six SOPA Award winners speaking at a week-long forum at Hong Kong Baptist University this year. With a background in economies, Chen has been focusing on business and financial reporting since she began her career in 1996. Some readers know news is important, but they think they will read it when they have more time, said Chen. “So what can we do?” she asked. “My solution is that we should find a new way to communicate with our new generation and try to be a platform to clarify information for our readers.” Chen said she experimented with new ways of storytelling, from words and information graphics to using animation to report economic issues. She’s tackled topics such as environmental protection, economic development, youth unemployment and inequality. “It is easy to say, but hard to do,” Chen said. Animated news needs a team made up of a journalist, transcript writer, broadcaster, web editor, artist, musician and animator, she said. “You can imagine how terrible the conferences are because I have to make them all clearly understand a serious economic issues, like Free Economic Pilot Zones, even including the artists who’ve never read our articles,” Chen said. Chen said her team will use new storytelling methods to report Taiwan’s presidential election...
Being a journalist is a calling, SOPA Award winners say

Being a journalist is a calling, SOPA Award winners say

by Zhang Jun The three jobs that most change the world are politician, teacher, and journalist, said a Taiwanese journalist at the Opening Ceremony of HKBU-SOPA Award Winners Forum last Tuesday. “I think journalists can speak for the people who cannot have the chance or opportunity to have their voice heard,” said Yi-Shan Chen, deputy editor of Taiwan’s CommonWealth Magazine and an instructor at National Taiwan University’s School of Journalism. Chen was one of six award-winning speakers at the forum, organized biennially by Hong Kong Baptist University and the Society of Publishers in Asia. “Is it still worth being a journalist? The short answer is yes… SOPA-award winners can remind everyone why journalists are still so important today,” Cliff Buddle, SOPA Awards Committee member, said in his introduction speech. “It is a passion to be a journalist, and it is a calling,” Nancy C. Carvajal, a reporter for the Philippine Daily Inquirer,...