KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 10 — During the COVID-19 pandemic, various interesting activities are organised by Malaysians, including a newsreading challenge, which received overwhelming response that it became viral on social media, especially onTwitter and TikTok.
Many may think that newsreading is easy and working as a newsreader is a glamourous job, without realising that a newsreader needs to possess certain skills and techniques to ensure the information is conveyed clearly.
The difficulties and challenges of this career were felt recently by about 400 participants of the 2021 Secondary School Level News Reading Challenge.
It was organised by Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan (SMK) Putrajaya Precinct 11 (1) and SMK Kubang Kerian in collaboration with the Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama). The month-long challenge started last July 15.
The competition’s assistant coordinator, Farizal Yusoff said the various constraints brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, including school closures, called on educators to be more creative in “putting” the fun in learning, including in co-curricular activities.
“This competition,to some extent, gives exposure to the participants about the world of journalism and its challenges when they had to chose issues, produced news scripts, as well as presented and edited their two-minute videos.
“As the organiser, and with guidance from the invited jurors, we also taught participants to be wary of fake news that can threaten unity among Malaysians,” he said.
There were two editions of the 2021 Secondary School Level News Reading Challenge, namely in Bahasa Malaysia and English. In addition to the goal of finding new talents in the field of creative media, the competition also emphasises students’ understanding of and sensitivity to current issues.
All video entries underwent an evaluation process by seven professional jurors, comprising local university lecturers, chief reporters of local newspapers, publishers, and television and radio news presenters who selected the five best videos from each category to compete (10 participants in all) in the finals which will take place virtually on Bernama TV on Sunday (Sept 12) at 9 pm on Astro 502, Unifi TV 631, MyFreeview 121 and Bernama TV Facebook.