I’ve gotten to the point now where I don’t even think that much about daily routines. For the most part, I know what to expect on a daily basis and I’m proud to say that I’ve ditched that “deer in headlights” look that I had when I first started nearly two years ago and was a little overwhelmed by everything.
Now that I’m in media with a “big boy job” as my friends and former professors like to call it, I pay attention a lot more to what the other media outlets do. I’m sure 98 percent of them have been in media a lot longer than I have and it helps me refine my craft and see how I’m doing compared to what they do.
For those who think nothing happens in a small town, they’re dead wrong. If “nothing” happened in a small town, then I’d be out of a job. My biggest adjustment period coming here was learning how to write hard news, such as local government and all that happens at Council meetings, school board meetings, etc.
We as the media always get a bad name for one reason or another. I get it, we’re the source and we’re the front line for delivering pieces timely and accurate. Sometimes, we make mistakes. We’re human just like everybody else. But some of the things the media gets hounded for, baffles me.
I compare some of the scrutiny we face, to some of the public figures in sports. Look at baseball and the steroid and performance enhancing drugs “era” that baseball is currently facing. Is it fair to outcast an entire organization based on the action of a select group of people? Media’s no different. We do the best we can with what we have and it’s unfair to judge an entire organization, based off the actions of a select group of people. There’s always things we can do better or do differently, we’re not perfect.
Take our little area for example. We’re two people writing articles for an entire county. As much as we try our best to be everywhere, we can’t. We have to prioritize with what we can attend, to ensure that we’re providing the best coverage possible. For a little town, we have a lot going on; more than probably a lot of small towns across the nation.
Some things that people say, get under my skin but hey, I chose this profession and the saying that my college professors always told me rings true: “When you’re in media, you don’t make friends.” It’s hard to have an opinion in media, because sometimes people assume that that’s the opinion of the entity that you work for. It’s largely why I stay out of facebook debates as much as possible.
You may not like everything that we do and that’s okay. The beauty about living in a free country such as the one we live in, is that everyone’s entitled to their own opinion. I always encourage everyone possible to pick up the paper, because we do put a lot good information in there and have a little something for everybody. Whether it’s something having to do with the kids at the school, or the sports teams, or reporting on what’s going on at the Town Council or County Commissioner’s meetings, we strive to do the very best we can.
I always tell people, there’s a chair sitting on the corner of my desk. Come tell us how we can improve or give us your ideas on what we should cover. We appreciate the feedback, news tips, letters to the editor, etc. and are always looking for ways to improve.
— Michael Acosta