THE CHALLENGES OF RADIO NEWS GATHERING AND REPORTING A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF THE FEDERAL RADIO CORPORATION OF NIGERIA (FRCN)
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This research work seeks to find out the challenges faced by two radio news medium, the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) Kaduna and Ray Power 100.5 Fm Jos in news gathering and reporting, and to also compare and contrast these challenges faced by the two medium. In the review of related literature, scholars in the area under review gave different views to news and news gathering. It was observed that news refers to accurate and timely happenings, discoveries, opinions, and matters of any sort which affect or interest the readers, listeners or viewers. To strengthen this research work, the study was anchored on technological determinism theory and the new media theory. Survey research method was used in conducting this research work and in-depth interview was employed, interview guide was used as the instrument for collecting data, sixty four (64) news producers and reporters from the two medium is the population of the study. For this research work six (6) reporters from FRCN and six (6) from Ray Power Fm Jos was interviewed using in-depth interview guide to elicit response. The sample size is therefore, be twelve (12) accordingly. In data presentation and analysis, the findings revealed that the issue of news gathering and reporting in the 21st century has been improved due to the introduction and the use of information and communication technologies gadgets in news gathering and reporting. Overcoming the challenges faced in news gathering and reporting, journalist engages the new technologies for effective news gathering and reporting. The study also revealed that both stations, that is the FRCN and Raypower100.5fm Jos face similar challenges but tackled differently which some could be traced to funding and inadequate modern equipment for good transmissions. To this end the researcher recommended that journalists should uphold professionalism by adhering to ethical standard and not to allow ownership control take center play in their practices. Owners of radio stations should also ensure that they are well trained especially on the availability of modern equipment so as to meet up the standard of the day.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Radio as a medium is becoming more popular in our society daily. The medium is beneficial to both the educated and the uneducated in our society more than any other medium; it has the capacity to reach millions of Nigerians residing in the rural and urban areas.
Nsi (1997), radio means simply reaching out to people from point to point through space with sound waves or electromagnetic waves. Radio has been dominated by the strong and almost universal half belief about its immense potency as a means of social, cultural and ultimately political influence and power. This belief about power of radio rest on a single and manifest truth. It makes it possible for man to address an audience of hundreds of millions.
Uyo (1987) argues that messages are symbolic products, created and transmitted by radio to the public towards the fulfillment of their functions to the society. However, news gathering is a major challenge being faced by media practitioners – that is journalist in Nigeria. These challenges impede on effectiveness of radio as a medium of mass communication and journalist who are saddled with the responsibility of radio news gathering. The success or realization of an individual or a nation’s set goal is dependent on the policies legal framework, political environment and leadership styles. From the forgoing, it is quite obvious that radio reporting faces challenges daily in news gathering, which however, affects the effectiveness and efficiency of the medium. It also tends to outclass other medium in terms of relative proximity to reality of what is happening than any other media.
Although, radio remains the most preferred medium for news amongst Nigerians, it is faced with the problems of gathering and sourcing for news. News gathering is the primary function of a media organization or a journalist as it were, which metamorphosed into dissemination of news items after proper processing.
The radio as a medium in mass communication has remained a consistent and strong medium since its inception. It reaches more of the masses than other mass media channels because of some of its characteristics. The researcher therefore intends to delve into finding out the challenges and possibly proffer solutions to these challenges in a comparative analysis.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Every research work is predicated on a problem. Most researches on radio news reporting have their coverage of particular events of general interest and critique of programmes. This is so because it permits a close scrutiny of the output of radio stations. Nwosu (1990).
Radio stations both public and private have a mandate to educate, inform and serve as watchdog of the society. In this jet age, one expects that the radio should function in full capacity, but the disturbing story is that most radio stations are shadow of themselves. The watchdog argument has over the years been evacuated of its effectiveness, if there was any, by the political and economic interest which under guard media production and operation. The mass media having been effectively colonized by powerful economic interests, have lost their vitality as an independent watchdog. They may still occasionally bark, but their ability to bite has been seriously curtailed. In the words of Waisbord, cited in Oso (2013) proximity to specific powers makes the press unlikely to be interested in keeping the same interests at bay. It dims the prospects that new organization can effectively. “Sustain vigilant scrutiny of government and centres of powerss”. Watch dogs do not bite their owners nor do they chomp neighbour with whom they have amiable relationships (Oso, 2013:3)
In this research work, the research intends to access the problems as it relates to the enormous challenges faces by most radio station especially the Federal radio cooperation of Nigeria (FRCN) Kaduna and the Raypower F.M Jos in their news gathering and reporting
The study intends to ascertain these challenges as opposed to the developed nations of the world.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The researcher intends to find the method and challenges of radio news gathering in FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos. But specifically though it is;
1. To find out the techniques adopted by journalist in FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos in news gathering.
2. To find out the challenges faced by these two news mediums when gathering news.
3. To compare and contrast the challenges faced by FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos in news gathering.
4. To find out whether ownership affect journalist in news gathering.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
In order to put this research into perspective the researcher has put down some salient questions that deserve clarifications;
1. What are the various techniques adopted by FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos in news gathering?
2. What are the challenges facing FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos in news gathering?
3. In what ways are the challenges faced by FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos similar or different in news gathering?
4. How does ownership affect news gathering in these news media?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
After the whole work is completed, media outfits will benefit because the researcher must have suggested other ways through which they can easily set information for their news.
The society on the other hand will also benefit in the sense that when these media outfits access information, they will disseminate it to the general public.
The study will also add knowledge to scholars and upcoming researchers on these challenges.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
Every event, situation or circumstances occurs with an environment. It means that the event as a phenomenon occurs in an environment. Owuamalam (2012), the area within which the event occurs is the scope of the study. He added that it delimits the area or subject, from a vast area of consideration. Scope therefore makes the area of study manageable for effective research study. The scope of the researchers work is FRCN Kaduna and RayPower 100.5 fm Jos.
1.7 OPERATIONAL DEFINITION OF TERMS
Radio: It is the transmission of signal by modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies below those visible light received by heterogeneous audience.
Reporting: To write or give account of something for the purpose of presentation to others, for the publication of news in the newspaper, radio and television.
Nigeria: Is a Federal constituted Republic comprising of 36 states and one (1) Federal Capital Territory (FCT). The country is located in West Africa and boarders the Gulf of Guinea with Republic of Benin in West and Cameroun in the East. Nigeria has a compact area of 923.768sqaure kilometers.
News: News is a product of human cognition, individual world views and other socializing influences that shared to the public.
Challenges: Are impediments faced by people or organizations in carrying out an act or responsibility.
Comparative: This is the item-by-item comparison of two or more comparable alternatives, product, qualification the like.
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