The Nether Regions

The blog that slips an affectionate hand between the thighs of the regional media

Crap jobs for the work experience kid #1

with one comment

Welcome to the first part of another doubtlessly ill-judged, ill-fated, ill-timed and ill-mannered series on The nether regions.

In any year, a local newspaper will allow dozens of naive ex-Newsround Press Packers through its doors with the happy intention of exploiting their willingness to work free of charge. This is all done under the banner of ‘work experience’ but, in reality, the tasks delegated to the  work experience kid often bear very little resemblance to any form of journalistic ‘work’ or indeed ‘experience’. I should know: during a period of work experience at the semi-iconic Whitby Gazette I was made to assist the paper’s part-time photographer in opening and closing the town’s semi-iconic swing bridge every Friday lunchtime because it was his other job. Great for my biceps, yes, but really no use for developing my shorthand skills.

Crap jobs for the work experience kid #1 : Pretending to burgle houses

(Source: Newbury Weekly News)

Job description: Creation of barely-feasible scenes whereby balaclava-clad youths are depicted attempting to forcibly penetrate the PVC doors of suburban residential properties.

Purpose: To allow the newspaper to develop an archive of library pictures to accompany generic burglary stories about local crime statistics or police warnings about leaving windows open during the summer months.

Additional purpose: To create a middle class sense of fear and suspicion of others in society in order to either divert attention from the local police force’s underperformance or to justify public funding for expensive police operations. This sense of fear and suspicion is partly achieved through the use of photographs of models/work experience kids dressed in socially-stigmatised clothing such as ‘hoodies’ and baggy jackets.

(Source: Hounslow Chronicle)

Required props: Standard issue balaclava or other stereotypically menacing headwear; well-fitting gloves; newspaper editor’s garden patio doors.

‘Genuine journalistic work experience’ rating: 2/10. If you’re an aspiring news reporter you’re supposed to want to cover the story, not look like you’re part of it.

Associated societal risks: Encouraging young people to sample the thrill of breaking and entering other people’s homes is a slippery slope. Especially as burglary pays better than local journalism.

Additional associated societal risk: Inadvertent zombification of the work experience kid. See photo below.

(Source: Reading Post)

Thank you to Ellie for the photos.

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Written by Paddy

June 24, 2010 at 11:23 am

One Response

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  1. […] series for The Nether Regions, ‘Crap jobs for the work experience kid’. Entry #1 here; being the burglar in the fear-mongering stock shots. Subscribe there; […]


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