The classifications of journalism and their roles

Sports journalists or pundits cover sport events like football, cricket and other sporting events and share them with the public

In the journalism profession, there are various roles each journalist plays. In the systems of government where ministers operate, there are various roles each minister plays even though they are all ministers. In order for their various roles to be known, there are classifications assigned to their ministerial appointments such minister of finance, meaning a minister in charge of the country’s finances, minister of agriculture, meaning a minister in charge of the agricultural department in the country, and the others roles ministers play that you can mention. It is the same case in the journalism profession. Journalism is very general and within this profession, there are journalists who play specific functions or roles. In this article, we will explore the classifications of journalism and their roles.

There are three main classifications of journalism. Journalism based on the medium, journalism based on the field and journalism based on hard news or soft news. Now let us delve deeper into these categories and discover their roles.

Journalism based on the medium is mainly about the medium such journalists use in their day to day profession. We discovered under mass media that, there are three main forms of mass media namely; print media, broadcast media and online media. There are journalists who work with these mediums and their works are based on the mediums used. The journalist on print media is a print journalist and these journalists are into writing newspapers, magazines, journals, periodicals and any other document that is aimed to inform the public through journalism. The journalist who works through the online media is also known to be either blogger or digital journalist. 

The journalist on broadcast media is also known to be a broadcast journalist and they work on the television and radio stations. They are the news presenters and news anchors that we normally hear from on the radios and television stations. The next class thus journalism based on soft news or hard news may look confusing but we have been hearing from them each and every day. Soft news is that news that are predictable like sports, entertainment, press conferences and the likes. Now a journalist is assigned to any of these areas and the area becomes the title of the journalist. For instance, sport journalist, entertainment journalist, education journalist, celebrity journalist, etc. Hard news on the other hand deals with news stories that are unpredictable. Example legal journalist, lifestyle journalist, political journalist and others. The last classification thus journalism based on the field is the various beat areas assigned to journalists. Example, science journalism, art journalism, crime journalism, business journalism, etc. and they all play their roles in accordance with the assigned field.

Let us now look at some of the roles the various journalists play in the profession. Investigative journalists deal with objectively going undercover to unveil stories which are hidden and are of public interests. An example of such journalist is Anas Aremeyaw Anas of the Tiger Eye PI who has gone undercover to expose many political leaders and judges for their fraudulent hidden acts causing loss to the state. Manasseh Azure Awuni of Ghana is no exception and they all have a common purpose of serving the public.

The crime journalists deal majorly with stories involving crimes and does a follow-up to get to the peak of such stories. Sometimes, these journalists also act as undercover journalists to get information from crime scenes and incidences. Business journalists are also concerned with issues pertaining to business and disseminates news stories about business to the public. The celebrity journalists are those into showbiz and they normally interview and talk about trending issues about celebrities and they also act as a source of promotion for the various artists. 

Sports journalists or pundits cover sport events like football, cricket and other sporting events and share them with the public. This is why news about the recent world cup circulated because of the role the various sports journalists played. Education journalists also disseminate information pertaining to education to the public like the amendments in the education sector, academic calendars and all updates in relation to education. There is also the photo journalist whose work is to capture important photos that communicate meanings. These kinds of journalists are scarce in the African region but in the western part, there are many of them. Some go under sea and others to the jungles and snap photos of animals and wonderful images that are sure to entice viewers. They are normally awarded for that.

Journalism is an umbrella term and under this umbrella, there are various part of roles and the above mentioned are some of them.

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