“Is a good story a bad story?”


For Haagerup, too many radio broadcasters focus on bad stories. Being critical is a really important tool but it is not the goal. Conflict, crooks and victims. Journalists come into broadcasting in order to solve problems. Bring bad guys to justice. Take down the authorities.

We have turned news into drama. Good news happens in slow motion without drama. So is it more difficult to get to grips with the good news stories? Do we let the tiny bits of bad news get in the way of bad news? Do we perceive the story in a very specific way? Can we fix it? Yes we can! Haagerup thinks that a pattern of thought needs to change. It’s a difficult thing to do, but can news be engaging and inspiring? Haagerup thinks it is about changing journalist’s mindset. The way they perceive the world. Some journalists think it is crazy. They think it is advertising. Conversations with journalists can be tricky and change takes time! Ulrik Haagerup calls this type of journalism, “constructive news”. Journalists need to supplement our normal criteria for news.

We need to seek out and reflect the best possible version of the news. That doesn’t mean that the desire of saying something positive should get in the way of the facts, but it does mean we should be open to idea of saying something positive. It does mean we should frame our questions in a way that leads to positive answers.

Thanks Ulrik, a really fascinating insight into the world of constructive journalism!

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