Who thought that an MU grad and fellow Chicagoan would get to be so famous for an dance video of sorts quitting her job? Marina Shifrin had been working at Next Media Animation when she decided to quit because she felt like it had become all about clicks and not about quality.
I can connect with a homegirl on this one. As we go through the wonderful Journalism program here at Mizzou, we are taught how to make high quality work that has major importance to the public. It is always stressed that we are serving the public and doing all this glorious storytelling. Obviously the J-School is a bit biased, but it makes us feel like we have purpose in society and that our content has some sort of authority. Many learn to love the long form style, yet we are tantalized by the fast food “journalism” of BuzzFeed. That storytelling love ends up a broken heart after many journalism majors graduate and get into careers that aren’t what they expected, much like Marina.
Some of that almost romantic quality of journalism that we are told about here is why I wanted to pursue a journalism degree. I love magazines and how they can tell me so much about some of my favorite topics, such as fashion and issues effecting women and the world. Pardon my casual blasphemy but magazines are my Bible and I study them in the same way I study texts for class.
But, part of me also struggles with journalism. I was never part of the 10+ Pacemaker awarded paper at my high school, heck I still wanted to be a fashion designer at that point. My love for journalism is rooted in something much different than my peers in the J-School because I didn’t fall in love with the chase for news and I don’t have a passion for PR. I just really love the media style of magazines and what they have given me throughout my life. Honestly, I want to work at a fashion magazine in a role like Grace Coddington has at Vogue. I am not about that Anna Wintour life, I don’t know if I could handle that amount of responsibility and power. But Grace, Grace gets to have a decent amount of power in the fashion world, style shoots, oversee a section, etc. So, when it comes down to it, I love writing but I really want to just be apart of the cultural influence that magazines hold. I would love to do page design because I have the eye for it, I just don’t have the experience.
So, this all leaves me feeling lost in the J-School. Am I doing the right thing by being a part of the group that loves media and what it can do? Will I end up dancing my heart out to quit a job that leaves me with the thought that “journalism is dead to me?” I worry that people think my dream is frivolous, but is that something I should be worried about? Is that buying into the “clicks?”
All I can do right know is keep dancing through this J-School life and try to find my focus and my answer, and maybe it will end up with me leaving something because it is not what I believe in, but at least I will know I stand for something.