The Alcorn State University (ASU) National Association of Black Journalists hosted a Lunch and Learn with publisher Jackie Hampton and editor Othor Cain of The Mississippi Link on Thursday, November 7th at 12:30 pm in the Industrial Technology Building in Room 214.
This event was put together to help students better understand the world of journalism and news reporting. Being apart of the Black Press, Hampton and Cain are able to tell the entire story unbiasedly. Cain expressed, “The advantage of working at The Black Press is that we are able to control the narrative. People will argue that there are three sides to every story which are your side, my side, and somewhere in between, the truth. I would argue that as members of the Black Press, why do we have to be guided by sides? Being in front of the camera is good, but being able to dictate the type of stories you tell is even better.”
Cain explained that the mainstream media is different from The Black Press because you are told how to tell your stories, what angle to get your stories, and sometimes you are told the type of source you need to corroborate your story. However, in the Black Press, you are not necessarily bound by those guidelines. You, as a black journalist, have a responsibility of telling stories from a black perspective and through the eyes of black people–not skewing the information, but not exactly taking the same route as the mainstream media.
He expressed that the most important thing is writing no matter what area of Mass Communications that you may choose to go in. Being multimedia journalists requires all around the board training. Cain states, “You have to understand the power of the pen, because writing is life. Some of the best writers are people that are well-read. So if you read a lot, your writing improves. It is your base and your foundation. You have everything at your fingertips to be successful, to lead, and to compete, but you have to be willing to invest and put in the time, and it starts with your ability to write.”