Journalism Now trainer Jamal Osman on building trust and reputation

Jamal Osman a multi-award winning journalist and filmmaker specialising in sub-Saharan Africa is a course leader on Thomson Foundation's e-learning platform Journalism NOW.

Jamal's course, 'Building Trust & Reputation' helps journalists differentiate themselves and their organisations from other voices in our crowded media landscape.

"For me, journalism isn't just a way to feed my family, it's also something of an obsession," says the Africa reporter for the UK-based Channel 4 News.


I'm obsessed with trust, transparency and the elimination of corruption

Jamal Osman, Journalism Now course leader
Mission statement for journalists

"Journalism as we know it doesn't exist in Somalia, where I come from," says Jamal. "There, journalists treat the public like fools, which they are not. Accepting payment for doing stories is the norm. When I see people abusing their position in this way, it makes me angry."

"That's why at our independent digital media organisation, Dal Soor, we have a mission statement, which makes it clear that we are independent. We do stories that other journalists just don't do."

Jamal believes that articulating a mission statement provides journalists with an opportunity to reflect on and create a tool through which they can be transparent with their audience and win their trust.

More than 60 per cent of people who have enrolled for Jamal's course, have completed it. That's the highest percentage of any of the modules at Journalism NOW. 




Jamal's interview appears in our annual review. Available here



Impartiality is important

"I tried to make the course as accessible as possible," says Jamal. "Always making it clear that impartiality is important – it's for a practical reason too: without the trust of your sources and your audience, you are unlikely to be successful. People think I'm crazy, but I believe journalism can help change things for the better."   

Journalism NOW

Journalism Now is Thomson Foundation's unique knowledge-sharing and e-learning platform specially designed to address the needs of journalists in emerging economies.


Journalism Now

A new global platform offering lifelong learning to journalists across the world


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A series of courses designed to update journalists' digital and multimedia skills



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