Saturday, 4 August 2012

My Work Experience at ITV News

Inside the oh so swish ITN building
I have had the tremendous good fortune of spending the past week working at ITV News head offices in London, and what a week it's been. I have learnt so much about the world of broadcast journalism, getting to chat to people in all sorts of departments, such as the Master Control Room (known as the 'MCR' by those in the business), station engineers, graphics, PR, editors, producers, reporters, presenters and even the managing director, Robin Elias. He told me that curiosity is the key quality. So, wannabe journos, stay curious. And the most amazing thing about it all was how friendly and kind everyone was - each and every person I encountered round the office took the time to explain things to little old me, the workie, despite obviously all being really busy.

They are based in a very slick looking building - inside the newsroom the desks are all organised in curves and circles and there are hundreds of screens and monitors everywhere. There's a really exciting atmosphere of everyone working hard. Some of the producers were chatting about how the Olympics reporters are working  for nearly three weeks straight without a break, because "Nobody wants their day off to be the day something exciting happens," and I think that just about sums it up.

On my first day I bumped into the incredible Deborah Turness in the ladies' loo (as you do), who has been the editor of ITV News since 2004. She's the first female editor of network news, and heavily pregnant with her second child, a real inspiration.

It was also really interesting seeing the presenters round the office. To be honest, they stick out like sore thumbs: so glamorous, poised and generally perfect. On one of my tea runs I met Natasha Kaplinsky in the kitchen. It was awesome.

I also noticed that the reporters tend to put on quite a different voice when recording their "voxpops" (voiceovers) compared to their normal way of speaking - hardly surprising really.

I've done a fair few stints of work experience, but this was definitely one of my most interesting, exciting and fun. Especially doing it during the Olympics! There is absolutely no better way of learning about an industry than actually getting there. It. Was. Fab.

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