Many mainstream stories feature religion as an element in the mix. It might be the conjunction of religion and violence; the clash of ethnicity, faith and culture or controversy around the relation of secular ideology and faith-based values. Who takes responsibility for ensuring that journalism students and professional journalists are well-equipped to interpret the powerful impetus of religion at home and abroad – and not only religion but belief in a wider sense?
The answer, in Wales, has been almost no one.
But that is changing, and Wales is at the forefront. In Cardiff on November 8th a day-long workshop was held which it is hoped will have a positive effect on the training of professional journalists and on university curricula.
This post appeared first on the IWA’s clickonwales site 5.11.16
When religion makes the news how well equipped are journalists to understand it? The notion of a dedicated religious correspondent fell out of favour as Britain became more secular but religion as a force in current affairs has never been so prominent. There is a religion-and belief-sized gap in the training that would-be journalists and practising professionals are receiving. NUJ Training Wales, the training arm of the National Union of Journalists has taken a bold initiative towards filling it.
A one-day workshop will be held in Cardiff on November 8th
Religion is an element in many high profile stories today but how well are journalists supported in their efforts to understand and interpret its role? I have organised with NUJ Training Wales the first event in Wales to address this urgent skills issue.
WHEN RELIGION MAKES THE NEWS: Workshop & Networking Event, Cardiff
A workshop for all journalists living or working in Wales: 8th November 2016
During this year’s Celtic Media Festival in Dungarvan I was on a panel about factual tv. I took immediate issue with the assumption behind the session’s brief – The most prolific and successful genre in the Celtic nations is factual, both in English and in the indigenous languages. Is factual prolific and what is the measure of success? But further, I question the festival’s decision to ignore the biggest challenge to the factual genre – adequate media policy.
PSB Television in a digital world – what’s the recipe for Wales?
On April 6th there was a chance to get Welsh voices on the record at the session for Wales of David Puttnam’s Future of PSB TV Inquiry. The event was hosted by Cardiff University’s School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies. This independent inquiry is gathering evidence from around the UK and will report in June.
I spoke for the Institute of Welsh Affairs alongside Angharad Mair (Tinopolis, BAFTA Cymru), Huw Jones (S4C), Rhys Evans (BBC Cymru Wales) and Ian McKenzie (Nations and Regions, Channel 4).
“The Inquiry has been set up to consider the nature, purpose and place of public service television today and for the future. It aims to address how public service content can be most effectively nurtured taking into consideration a range of services, platforms and funding models.Continue reading Future of PSB TV Inquiry – Wales→
“Here’s a man who plays hide and seek with the secret police and cuts his prison cell bars to escape as he faces the gallows”, says Guto Harri in this 60-minute documentary about St John Roberts (repeated on Sunday, 3rd April at 10pm on S4C with English sub-titles). “He acts more like James Bond than a saint. The issues underlying the history are echoed today, dealing as they do with someone considered to be a religious extremist, living abroad and considered a threat to the very fabric of the state.”
At a time when the future of the BBC’s Charter is being debated in public, and with politicians in Cardiff Bay and Westminster looking at the future of the media, this is a crucial time for broadcasting in Wales. This event will look at the key topics emerging from these debates and how they might influence the future of the BBC in Wales.Continue reading Debating the BBC (and more!) in Wales→