In search of a reliable source again!

January 4th, 2010

My phone rang earlier than usual this morning. It was a source.

“Guess what? I have got admission into IIM Ahmedabad. I am off,” he said.

“Nahiiiiiiiiii…i reacted instantly.”

“Oye…aren’t you happy for me?” he asked, obviously surprised by my reaction.

“Umm…errr…I am,” I said, reluctantly congratulating him.

He sensed my tone and said in jest, “Babe, look at the silver lining. I shall join a better company and be an even better source.”  We both laughed.

We have become good friends over the past three years that I have been reporting on education. And I take as much liberty to call him, as my office does to call me, during any time of the day or night.

So when he gave me this good or bad news over the phone from Hyderabad, I could not help my reaction.

On my way to the office, an over one hour travel, which I generally use to read the papers in detail, I could not help but fret over this temporary loss of a reliable and handy source. I mean c’mon, one-year is a long time man!

Later when I told this to my colleagues, they laughed at the extra importance I am attaching to a source.

But was I? Don’t all of us in journalism swear by our sources? Many of them make our stories into whatever they turn out to be. Though, mostly the confirmations are off the record, the information turns out to be correct.

In fact, I remember when one of my senior colleagues who quit this organization some time ago, said he felt lost when it came to reporting on a certain company as his only source had left for greener pastures.

Warning me against it my super boss said, “That’s the only problem with having single source in any company.” I agreed.

In a similar incident however, another senior colleague takes the cake.

When her very reliable source quit his industry to join another industry (due to the slowdown in the market), our lady lost sleep over it.
She told me that many of her breaking stories came from him and now she does not know what to do.

Believe it or not, she did not file stories for two days because, in her words, she could not ‘cope with this loss’.

Hmmmm…I don’t think am that saddened by this development.

So, till this gentleman polishes his management skills, I guess all I need to do is hunt for another ‘reliable source’ in his company!!

del.icio.us:In search of a reliable source again! digg:In search of a reliable source again! newsvine:In search of a reliable source again! reddit:In search of a reliable source again! Y!:In search of a reliable source again!