Friday, March 18, 2011

UTP Media VS National Media : The Inspirer and HOT visited The Star HQ

By Mohd Ashraf

Salam and Hi,
Here I would like to share my experience yesterday visiting our nation’s leading English Newspaper; The Star. Yup, the RM 1.20 people’s paper that you can buy at any grocery shops. This trip was a collaboration between the two prominent printed medias in UTP, The Inspirer and HOT.
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We arrived at Menara Star, Damansara around 11am. We we greeted by the corporate communication employees; Mr Eric, Mr Basyar and Ms Kimmey. They were very friendly and we were greeted warmly.
199776_1862239444752_1503931368_1935178_2867268_nThis was shown throughout the entire building!!!

1) The Star Gallery
This section is at the ground floor of the tower. All kinds of The Star publications such as Star main paper, Star Sunday,etc are exhibited here ( I jut got to know that it has 3 radio stations and also produced MAJALAH KUNTUM!)


2) Sharing Session with Joshua…
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Joshua is one of the leading journalist at The Star. He told us about the job scope of a journalist. According to him, a reporter is just there to report – exactly like the news unfolding in front of them. Journalist is more active in participating in the news that they write. They may add on their analysis and to a certain extent their own views toward the issue. Nevertheless, he stressed that there is a limit in providing ‘journalist’ style of news. Never to transgress the ethical boundary. Whatever you report, he says, must be the truth. How you put the truth in your writing, that is up to you. What the readers will interpret, that is up to them as well. He shared with us ,techniques in writing journalistic articles. For example, the pyramid style of article. Where the major points of the article are on top, the rest explanatory pat of it, shoved down. 

This is important because the newspaper layout is limited. Thus, your article might be cut down ( they usually remove the lower part of it because is is less important). Interestingly, he said that news nowadays can be fast delivered via electronical devices such as IPad and what not.  The Star will pay 80% of the cost – under a company’s scheme – making it affordable for its employees especially journalist and reporters. He also mentioned about the problems that publications in Malaysia has in dealing with government regulations and people’s expectation.

3) Visit to the Editorials

I will just let the picture tell you the story.
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We were very lucky because our visit was lead by The Star number 2 person, Mr David! Usually he only handles corporate and ministerial visit, however, he was pleased with our first time visit and decided to show us around! Thank you Mr David for your kind hospitality! About the editorial area where the news are produced, they have a very casual working environment. Flags of football teams were hung from the ceiling, guitar and relax station, no PC on the desk – they work at the workstation, and candy bars just to name a few. In the morning, it is vacant because most of the reporters and journalist are out for their daily assignments. They will be back around 4pm to complete the news.

4) The Star Hub, Shah Alam

From Damansara we moved to Shah Alam to look at the printing process.Some facts – they have three printing hubs – Shah Alam, Penang and Kuching. Total capacity for the entire nation is about half a million newspapers daily. All operation except paper loading in the machine are computerized (so, they limit manpower). Unfortunately, we cannot take pictures in the plant for security reasons. But, from the experience, I can tell that this is a large scale production plant. They have rows of magazines on a conveyer belt coming in and out various big machines for printing, folding and packaging. Another fact I want to share is,’the cost for each paper is actually RM 4.50 (we are paying RM 1.20 only!). So the profit comes, according to the Assistant Production Manager at the plant, from advertisement – One full coloured page a day cost you about RM 30,000! OMG! haha..so just imagine Those daily advertisement that we have in The Star.

Conclusion!

This trip is an eye opener – about the editorial and publication process of a national publication like The Star. Fast moving, mass production and solid promotion – the recipe of success for a national media. For The Inspirer and Hot, we learn a lot and we will work on our system’s improvisation to feed the need of UTP readers in the future!

Long live Media Movement!

1 comments:

Zinedine Zaiddin on March 19, 2011 at 2:44 AM said...

Fuiyoh, what a great experience you guys get..make sure you guys really benefits from the tour, or else it will be wasted! :)

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