Hosts of the How to Cover Money podcast Micki Maynard and Mark Remillard spoke with Dan Gillmor about the dos and don’ts of covering technology.
Gillmor said the best way for young journalists to start out nowadays is to write a blog on a niche topic they are passionate about. For instance, if you like technology, pick a niche within technology and become the authority on that issue.
Gillmor warned aspiring journalists against becoming too much of a fan of the technology they’re reporting on. He also cautioned would-be journos to avoid being buddies and friends with the people and companies they cover.
“It’s fine to be a fan at one level,” Gillmor said. “But what’s dangerous is becoming a fan-boy or fan-girl of the people doing the topic. In the case of tech, it’s the worship of certain companies that worries me a lot.”
Be honest and transparent with the audience about any potential conflicts of interest.
“If you have anything that might raise a question in someone’s mind after they hear about it let them know ahead of time,” Gillmor said. “That’s why transparency is very important.”