The Jump from Radio to TV

The Jump from Radio to TV

Written by Manny Paiva, RTDNA Canada Central Region Director A famous Canadian once said, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take.” So with Wayne Gretzky’s quote ringing in the back of my head, I decided to apply for the News Director position at CTV Windsor and was fortunate enough to be chosen

Written by Manny Paiva, RTDNA Canada Central Region Director

A famous Canadian once said, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take.”

So with Wayne Gretzky’s quote ringing in the back of my head, I decided to apply for the News Director position at CTV Windsor and was fortunate enough to be chosen for the job. From what I am told was “a very qualified list of journalists.” It wasn’t an easy decision by any means, after spending more than 20 years working in radio news for Bayshore Broadcasting in Owen Sound, helping the company grow to eight radio stations.

Many people suggested I was “brave” and even “crazy” to make the jump from radio to television news since they are so different. That got me thinking about the similarities and differences between the two mediums.

There are obvious differences. Radio uses sound to tell a story. Television uses video. The radio and television newsrooms are likely using different programs to get their newscasts on the air. Today’s radio reporter is usually armed with a smartphone, possibly with a microphone attached, or even a tablet (maybe a pen and notepad ). Television reporters obviously have a camera and tripod and a smartphone, but some today and using tablets instead of a camera.

After almost at month at CTV Windsor, there are those obvious differences from when I worked in radio – but I have also found many similarities.

You will find that good radio and television reporters ask similar questions to help explain the story, and to get that great “sound bite.” In this digital age, you will also find those same reporters snapping photos and video and typing as fast as they can on their smartphones to get their story on social media. Yes, radio has that immediacy factor, and television news traditionally has the 6 o’clock newscast. But, in this digital age and the prominence of all news TV networks, television reporters must have the same time management and deadline skills that radio reporters possess.

While television reporters have to shoot more footage with their camera to make their story come to life, more and more radio reporters are shooting pictures and video with their smartphones for their story.

I am a big believer in strong writing skills. I have always said “if you are a good writer, you will sound that much better on the radio.” In television, if you are a strong writer, you can make a bigger impact with your story. I have found the links between a reporters writing and their video can make a huge difference in telling a story.

One of the biggest similarities you will find between radio and television newsrooms is the people you work with. When I left Owen Sound, I thought to myself that I wouldn’t find another close knit and hard working group of journalists. I can honestly say that the group at CTV Windsor is not only hard working and dedicated to the craft, but also look out for and help one another in order to get the best product on the air, and they have made my transition that much easier.

So while we may do different things in radio and television, we are all in the business of covering breaking news and telling compelling stories, that we think are important and matter to the communities we live in.

So I can honestly say today, I’m glad I took the shot… and it’s landed in the top corner of the net.

RTDNA
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