The Subtle and Slippery Art of Interviewing
Talk to a range of journalists or read interviewing textbooks and it seems the rules of interviewing are written in water. The challenge of persuading an ordinary person caught up in a news event differs from persuading a celebrity or politician to be interviewed. The group are likely to be accessible but uninterested in publicity and, quite possibly, hostile toward the media. The problem facing many journalists, whether writing news or features, is gaining access to newsmakers, and gaining it free of the interference of PRs. An instructive contrast was offered in two features published in the same issue of ‘Good Weekend’. Skype and related video communication applications are a great tool for journalists. They offer most of the advantages of in-person interviews with all the flexibility of a telephone interview and are a cost-effective way to interview overseas sources.