This week we asked Shane Green, an associate editor of The Age, to spend some time in the Communicators Corner. Shane began his career as a copy boy, going on to work in senior writing and editing roles in both Australia and Asia. A former Tokyo correspondent for Fairfax Media, Shane has also served as The Age’s industrial editor, state political editor during the Kennett era, features editor, education editor, national news editor and day editor. His words are consistent, interesting and keep the reader informed. Let’s learn a little more behind the columnist: @Shanegreeenage
Tell us about a typical day at Media House?
I wish I could say there was a typical day. The nature of news is that no day is the same. And when I say “day”, we are a 24-hour operation. In my case, my day often involves being out of the office and in the field. I usually do longer, more indepth pieces, and I am a great believer in conducting interviews face-to-face. It’s called mud-on-the-boots journalism, and it works. You can establish relationships.
When did you know you first wanted to be a journalist?
This is a slightly corny story. I used to put out my own newspaper in primary school, typed up by my grandmother. As a kid, I would read every newspaper in the house, cover to cover. At 17, I started as a copy boy on the old Melbourne Herald, the afternoon paper. Loved the job then, and still do. So in answer to your question – maybe 10?
What’s been the biggest change to the newsroom since you began your career?
I’ve seen plenty of change. When I started in 1978, newspapers were still using hot metal printing. The newsroom was a thundering place of reporters pounding typewriters, punctuated by swearing, enveloped in a cloud of cigarette smoke. Computers arrived in the early 1980s. But the biggest change by far has been the digital revolution. The old media model has been fractured and disrupted. At The Age, we are a digital-first newsroom.
What communication tools can’t you live without?
Smartphone, followed by the smartphone, then the smartphone. That’s linked to the answer above, and the digital nature of our work and lives. Like many of us, I can do my job anywhere with this remarkable device. That being said, I feel naked without a pen…