Media Interviews – From Audio Files to the Written Word
Transcription of media interviews makes a journalist’s life easier
Conducting interviews is all part of the job if you are a journalist. And whatever area of the media you work in, you will be expected to interview all kinds of different people during the course of your career. Media interviews are a fact finding mission. They provide background information, a first-hand account, or can even lead to a fishing expedition. Yes, there are lots of reasons why you could find yourself in some far away location, asking questions and listening carefully to the answers.
Interview transcriptions are very useful when you are a journalist. It is very difficult to make notes whilst listening to every little nuance of an interviewee’s conversation. Besides, if the subject is a slippery one (politicians being a good example), it is often their body language and non-verbal clues you need to be watching carefully if you want the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
Most journalists will record their interviews so they can refer to them when writing up their article. An accurate recording of the interview helps them insert quotes and interesting snippets of information the interviewee threw into the conversation. However, the interview process does need to be handled correctly or you run the risk of ending up with hours of text that isn’t worth the time it takes to transcribe it.
Cover All Bases:
No matter how expensive your sound recording equipment is, it is always sensible to carry a back-up recording device, just in case. Imagine how horrific it would be if you travelled half way around the world to talk to a famous celebrity, only to discover some time later that the recording had failed part way through the interview.
Preparation is the key to a successful interview. Although it is possible to do an off-the-cuff interview and come out with some great information, in most cases lots of preparation is needed if you want to ask the right questions.
Build Rapport with the Interviewee:
The best interviews are where both parties are relaxed and there is a good rapport. The more relaxed the person is, the more likely they are to give you some good material to work with. It is often a good idea if you can speak to the person in advance of the full interview. This will help to break the ice and build some trust. It will also give you an opportunity to explain what the focus is so the subject has an idea of what to expect.
Accuracy is important, so check the facts before using a transcription of the interview to write your article. If you get something crucial wrong, it will reflect badly on you.
Transcribing interviews is a time consuming process. If you would rather be out there interviewing people, let Alphabet take care of your transcription instead.
The Founder of Alphabet, Denise Elsdon, commenced her training at British Aerospace. Having gained her RSA and Pitman qualifications, she embarked on her chosen career path as a personal secretary. Back in 1995, Alphabet Secretarial Services was born. Since then, Alphabet has provided professional transcription services to amazing clients like the NHS, Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs) and others.