What Does A Newscaster Do?
Newscasters are journalists who deliver the news via radio or television platforms. Their main work can be summed up by saying that they cover newsworthy events and broadcast them on air. They can either record their newscasts ahead of time so it can be replayed for later broadcasts or they can report it live. The latter is usually the mode of delivery for breaking news events that are still unfolding or continuing.
Newscasters must get the facts of a story before reporting on it. Thus, they must do research by visiting the place or places where the events took place, going to public and private offices to obtain the necessary documents and interviewing resource persons who have knowledge about the incident. This entails thoroughness and accuracy on the part of newscasters so that they are able to deliver a comprehensive and correct report. However, this can prove to be quite a challenge in some controversial cases where newscasters cannot find someone who is willing to share his or her knowledge about an incident in front of the camera. Thus, persistence is an important trait that newscaster should have to be able to get their story.
Although they deliver the news verbally, newscasters must still write the content of their report before doing the actual report. This will ensure that they won’t forget all the pertinent details of their story. This requires a very good grasp of the English language. Moreover, they may also have to vary their report in different ways so it can be aired in the station’s different news broadcasts from a fresh perspective.
Newscasters must cultivate contacts in many different places—and especially in the industry or area where they are assigned to constantly report on—so they can get the latest inside scoop on the latest events. Reporters are typically assigned a “beat” which they must cover and establishing good relationships with key people in this area will help them get knowledge of the news faster. These contacts can also point them to key resource personnel who will give them the information they ask for.
A job as a newscaster basically means being on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When a very important event unfolds in the middle of the night, they have to be ready to go to the location where the news is happening to provide coverage. In many cases, they may have to provide continuing coverage for days so they need to stay on location as the events develop. They also have to be ready to attend press conferences any time they are called by authorities or personalities because it is here where they get a more comprehensive idea about a particular situation, especially in political matters and those that concern the government and national security.
One of the more challenging tasks that newscasters have to face in their line of work is facing danger head on. More often than not, they may find themselves reporting on civil unrest, riots, hostage taking, natural calamities and similar events which are risky and volatile situations in themselves. They have to find a way to get the information they are looking for without sacrificing their own safety. However, this can be easier said than done, as evidenced by the many newscasters who have lost their lives while covering these situations.