Name: Tia Goldenberg
Place of residence: Israel
Occupation: Freelance journalist/ Producer for a news agency
Interests: Politics, international relations, current affairs, cooking
"Haraka, haraka, haina baraka (hurry, hurry is no blessing)" – Swahili proverb
How do you spend a work day?
“A lot of the job involves planning – figuring out what it is we're going to cover, assigning crews and keeping on top of breaking events during the day. Basically making sure the whole operation of news gathering and output goes smoothly,” says Goldenberg.
The job affords the chance to use technical and creative skills. After planning her day, Goldenberg receives feeds of news material from producers in the field in hot spots like Gaza and Israel’s West Bank. She sends this on to the head office in London for distribution to clients. The more creative part, Goldenberg uses a directorial eye to edit footage from cameramen throughout Israel. In addition, there are opportunities to get into the action: “Producers also go out into the field, planning shoots, working on feature stories and then putting it all together in a package you can call your own.”
How did you find this job?
Goldenberg was proactive in seeking out journalism work in Israel, without waiting around for job listings to pop up. “I came to Israel entirely jobless, thinking I would be unemployed for a while considering how glutted the journalism market is here,” she says.
With those old standbys of luck and perseverance, she was able to find something quickly. Goldenberg made cold calls to bureau chiefs, and was able to set up meetings and interviews. She sold herself with her experience in print journalism, an impressive resume and article clippings and promoted herself “as someone reliable, with ample experience and a fresh perspective on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
By making herself visible and available, she put herself in the right place for opportunities to come her way: “After a few meetings, I came upon an opening with this news agency, so I interviewed for them and ta-da!” she says.
What's the best part of your job?
“The best part, as with any journalism job, is getting out of the office and into the field – meeting people who are affected by the conflict on a daily basis and disseminating their story,” says Goldenberg. “The other great aspect of the job is the formidable teamwork involved in getting the job done. Everyone's involvement is crucial for the success of the entire operation, which really makes you feel like an asset.”
The worst part?
If you like routine and fixed schedules, the news industry might not be the one for you—particularly in volatile war zones. Goldenberg forgo celebrations to work the overnight shift on New Year’s Eve and cover the military crisis in Gaza. It has been tiring working through a number of overnight shifts throughout the events in the region.
What special skills are required?
If you would like to work as a television news producer in Israel, organization is absolutely essential in order to keep track of constantly changing news events throughout the day. Producers also have to keep in mind costs incurred, the locations of their crews, and other logistical details. For those agencies that haven’t yet upgraded to digital, it may be essential to have experience with tape-to-tape editing. Speaking the native tongues (Hebrew and/or Arabic) “is a huge asset,” says Goldenberg.