Not fit to wear the investigative trench coat

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Investigative journalists need all the skills of general reporting, but especially:

  • an alert mind to recognize story ideas and important facts which people are trying to hide
  • an ordered mind to make notes, file information and fit lots of facts together
  • patience to keep digging for information
  • good contacts throughout society
  • courage to withstand threats from people you are investigating 
(Sample Investigative Reports)


When I think of journalists, I normally think of investigative reporters.  This is probably why I was never interested in pursuing a career in journalism.  After reading this list, I am sure that I would fail as an investigative reporter.

First, I find it difficult to identify newsworthy stories.  I am not meddlesome.  Second, and most importantly, my mind is anything but ordered.  I rarely take organized notes, do not file information, and am disorganized.  I wouldn't have enough patience to keep digging for information unless I was really interested in a story, but I have difficulty getting interested in news stories unless they are bizarre.  I don't have good contacts but I guess that is something that is slowly established/built.  Finally, I would not be able to withstand threats and would probably just give into them.
 
Investigative reporting would probably be an area that I would have to extensively work on if I ever wanted to be involved in it.  It sounds a lot tougher than the movies make snooping around in a trench coat seem.

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