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Promoting Democracy by Strengthening the Media - Deutsche Welle

Promoting Democracy by Strengthening the Media - Deutsche Welle

Eberhard

Eberhard Sucker

IMPRESSIONS OF DAILY LIFE IN THE NEWSROOM Choosing the Right Lead Anyone who applies for a traineeship in a public broadcaster in Germany usually has graduated from university and also has a few years of experience as a freelancer at a local newspaper or broadcaster. The young Afghan journalists whom Ulrike Bratke encountered during her training mission for DW-AKADEMIE, however, grew up in a time of war and could count themselves lucky to have been able to attend school regularly. But they do have one thing in common with their German counterparts: a burning ambition to do the job well. It was my first day as one of DW-AKADEMIE’s trainers in Kabul. It was still two months to the official program launch. Like any other morning, the young editorial team began by researching the news of the day on the Internet. Hardly any of them had electricity at home, which made it impossible for them to inform themselves beforehand by radio, TV or Internet. What is the news? What are international broadcasters such as BBC, CNN, DW-TV and Aljazeera reporting on this day in May, 2006? Team meeting, brainstorming. Everybody is to have their say and name their choice of news for the day. What are the top stories? And above all, why? One of the younger group is team leader: this week it’s Shahamat. We trainers try to stay out of it and only get involved when necessary. ULRIKE BRATKE Finally, Internet facilities are also available for research Asif ’s first news proposal today: Indonesia. For days, there have been reports that the Mount Merapi volcano, not far from the metropolis of Yogyakarta, is about to erupt. Some 17,000 people have to be evacuated. We have already had the story in our program several times, a natural disaster on a large scale, and in Asia, too. 29

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