'Watchdog' to 'spin-doctor': challenges and benefits

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The movement of journalists between reporting and parliamentary media advising is common. Despite this, there has been surprisingly little scholarly examination of the career transition, its challenges and benefits. This article reports on a selection of findings from a wider study of the transition from journalism to parliamentary media advising and back again. Semi-structured interviews conducted with 21 journalists who had moved between the two roles revealed a range of challenges, including difficulty adjusting to the new role, social and professional isolation and negative perceptions of parliamentary media advising. However, the interviewees also considered the experience gave them a fresh perspective on journalism, increased their understanding of government and politics and made them better journalists. Based on these findings, this paper argues that while crossing over from journalism to parliamentary media advising can be accompanied by a range of challenges, time spent as a "spin-doctor" might increase scrutiny of journalism and politics and help some reporters become better "watchdogs"
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)145-156
    Number of pages12
    JournalAustralian Journalism Review
    Volume36
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014

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