I started as a reporter with a notebook and pen, filing from a pay phone at a local council or courtroom, and then waiting for the presses to roll for my stories to be told.
Now I can send multi-media files through wireless technology with breaking news live-to-air and online followed by text, audio and visual reports, analysis and background information.
After almost three decades of reporting I’ve seen technologies change many times, but the job of a journalist remains the same: first get the story, then tell the story as fast and as accurately as possible.
I’ve worked for several newspapers and broadcast organisations in the UK and Australia and worked on a whole range of stories for news, current affairs, features, reviews and documentaries. I’ve worked as a reporter, producer and specialist correspondent.
At the BBC I was part of a trial where journalists were trained in video work and I have filmed some of my own news stories and documentary sequences.
I was also one of the first journalists to have a text and streaming video story on the BBC’s then very new and emerging website. The link still exists although the images and video have now gone, so take a look at BBC The West – Michael Lund.
In 1998 I moved to Australia and worked as a reporter at The Sunday Mail in Brisbane and at the ABC for local radio, Radio National and television current affairs. I also lectured and tutored in journalism at the Queensland University of Technology.
I’ve been lucky enough to be a finalist in a number of media awards, and in 2002 I was highly commended in the Walkley Awards for my radio reporting. (See Awards).
The Walkley commendation led to work as a producer for the ABC television series Australian Story and I was a finalist in the Australian Museum Eureka Prizes and Queensland Media Awards for an episode I produced on a Queensland inventor.
At Australian Story I did the original research on the story of Gayle and Mac Shann. Gayle had lost one arm and the use of her other in an accident on their cattle station in central Queensland. Despite her injuries, the two were determined to battle it out and stay on the land.
Their story, With This Ring, has remained one of the most popular of the Australian Story series. (See the ABC’s My Favourite Australian Story)
More recently I worked at The Courier-Mail – and back at The Sunday Mail – as a feature writer covering a range of stories, including science issues.
One of the biggest changes in journalism has been the rise of the Internet which gives us all access to a wealth of information that’s now available at the click of a button.
I believe the Internet makes the job of a journalist even more important. It not only gives us access to more research information, but it also brings us new platforms for story telling.
Because journalists have to keep an eye on so much breaking and developing news I set up the Ultimate Guide website.
My latest job is as commissioning editor for The Conversation website, where I combine my skills as a journalist with my passion for exploring issues to help academics explain their ideas to a wider audience.