Oh no. I will have to become one of THEM
October 1, 2010 10 Comments
On Monday morning myself, The Student and The Detective were sat in a lecture about the much-debated, much-loved and much-mocked field of online journalism. Paul Bradshaw gave the lecture and began by telling everyone that they could tweet him with the hashtag for the lecture. Out came the iPhones, Blackberrys, Androids, Samsungs and more. And there I sat with my Sony Ericsson T280 (I found out its exact name by googling ‘Sony Ericsson old’) which is incapable of tweeting, accessing the internet or doing anything remotely social media-ish.
Not to be deterred I began texting updates to The Intern and was pleased to see the tweets from the Wannabe Hacks appearing on the big screen. By the way, before you all start shouting and hollering that you can text tweets to Twitter, I know, my phone doesn’t do that either. But the more I hurriedly text, desperately hoping for some shameless publicity, the more I realised something which disturbed me greatly.
Now I know I keep banging on about being this stingy Northerner who likes nothing better than saving money but that is only because it’s true. Not even joking, I got lost in this bloody stupid city the other day and calmed myself by visiting Tesco for a snack. I soon found myself hovering over the assistant as he priced up the reduced sandwiches. It was a low point, even for me. Anyway, let’s leave the embarrassing anecdotes behind and get back to the point…
As I was reminding you, I am a cheap git and upon embarking on this year in London, making my way through journo land, I was determined not to sell out. To stay true to myself and my crap phone. But I can’t keep this lie going any longer. I not only feel I need to have instant access to the world of social media but, in situations such as Bradshaw’s lecture, I want to have this kind of access. I want to be part of the debate when it’s happening, not a few hours later when I can finally get to a computer.
Maybe I am wrong, maybe I am giving up too early? If anyone out there has faith in the kind of stubborn approach I took initially and thinks there is a way to be a wannabe hack in 2010 and not have one of the latest mobiles then please give me your suggestions. I don’t want to become one of the iPhone crew or Blackberry brigade, but like moving to London it seems to be a necessary evil of trying to make it as a hack.
On my first day at City one of my tutors Ann McFerran told me and my classmates that a journalist’s most important tool is their phone. Going out on a slight whim, I expect what Ann meant was that a journalist must be able to call people and speak to them directly. In fact, her advice seems to take on a whole new meaning and relevance in this age of constant connectivity. Only question now is which one do I get?
What is the best of the latest mobiles for a wannabe journalist? Should The Chancer stick to his stingy beliefs and stand by his old and limited phone?
NB. The Wannabe Hacks do not hold any preference to any particular mobile phone company or network. Unless of course someone is willing the give us some for free then we may just amend our policy.