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Journalist Spotlight | Interview with Rohan Smith, Acting Deputy Editor and Victorian Reporter at

24 May, 2023

RohanSmithRohan Smith is currently working as the Acting Deputy Editor and Victorian Reporter at 

Medianet sat down with Rohan to discuss his career so far, and how he first got here. 


You have experience working with News Corp, National Radio News, as well as working as a communications consultant and a copywriter. How did you first get started in the media industry?

My first job in the industry was as a sports writer for Basketball Victoria. They sent me to matches and paid me to write about them which, at the time, seemed too good to be true. 


Did you always want a career in media? 

I always wanted to be a journalist, but breaking into the industry was not easy. 

I remember being told by my careers counsellor in high school that it was so competitive I might want to consider doing something else. 

Persistence paid off!


What has working in these different fields taught you the most about yourself? 

It has taught me that I chose the right profession. And that I work well under pressure. 

There is nothing like the ticking clock counting down to a live radio news bulletin to keep you motivated.


How would you describe the current media climate and culture? Is it any different from when you first started?

The biggest difference is that social media plays a much bigger role now than it did 15 years ago. 

Some of the biggest stories start on social media. 

A story might get a second life on social media, too, because somebody sees it on Facebook or Instagram or TikTok and reaches out with information.


If you could give your younger self some advice in working in this industry, what would it be?

Ask questions and listen. 

There is no education like learning from somebody who has done it before and I was lucky to have really experienced, senior journalists show me the ropes. 

You can learn more from listening in to a difficult phone interview or watching a court reporter file on deadline than you can in a classroom.


What's a commonly held belief about your job that you disagree with?

That it is easy and that anybody can do it!

It takes dedication and persistence and skill to understand what makes good news stories and be able to tell them.


What has been the most interesting piece you’ve written about in the last few months?

I've been filling in as deputy news editor this year so there has been less writing and more curating. 

The Samantha Azzopardi story about the conwoman from Sydney's south is probably the most interesting story I've written, both for readers and as the journalist digging around for answers.


What has been the most memorable experience in your career, so far?

Covering courtroom news. 

I've interviewed movie stars and prime ministers and sports heroes but nothing really compares to sitting in a courtroom with the person accused of committing a horrific act and watching them as they learn their fate.


What are your pitching preferences and how do you prefer people to get in touch with you? 

I prefer to receive pitches by email that are addressed to me and include, if relevant, that it is exclusive in the subject line. 

Follow-ups by text are also best if I haven't responded.

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