Journalist Spotlight | Interview with Talecia Vescio, Social Video Producer & Presenter at Junkee
Talecia Vescio, Social Video Producer and Presenter for Junkee, spoke with Lucy from the Medianet team recently about her experiences in the Australian media industry as well as what she has learned about herself and her work during that time. Talecia has had over 3 years experience in the radio broadcasting industry, and this year finished a stint at Mamamia, subsequently joining the team at Junkee.
Can you tell me a bit about your start in the industry, both in terms of your work as well as your education as a broadcaster?
My first proper media job where I was on the books was Online Content Producer for The Edge 96.1 (now known as CADA!) where I made socials, vids and wrote articles across ARN, and predominantly for the Mike E & Emma breakfast show. At the same time I was working brekky hours, I was also heading to AFTRS at night to get my degree! I call that the year that I didn’t sleep - I basically just remember watching The OC any spare minute I got, and flipping between school and work.
You’ve previously spent a lot of time working in the radio industry. How have the skills you learnt there translated to your work in digital and online media?
I think radio was an incredible spot to learn how to connect with audiences, and I think it’s a major contributing factor to why I love it so much. You’re taught in radio that you’re not speaking into a mic just to hear it in your own ears, rather speaking through the mic and connecting with a single person on the other side. I carry that sentiment with me now, and it really helps me remember how to frame social conversations that I want to start, or jump into in the digital space. It's a good perspective.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
This is a difficult question because I feel like my answer mightn’t be as cool as interviewing someone massive, or making something that’s gone viral (those things have happened, but I couldn’t call them a highlight). I think the highlight of my career has been learning about myself. Learning that I have a valuable perspective. Learning that we’re all just doing our best, and we’re allowed to mess it up. Learning that there’s people out there who look to us for comfort, for fun, for silliness, for explanation, for resolution. Learning that there’s more to learn, and the minute we think we know all there is to know, we don’t.
What perspectives and stories do you want to see featured more in the industry?
I don’t want to focus on what I think is lacking in the media industry, because we’d be here forever. Honestly, I just want to see honesty. I want to see more regular folk talking on the internet and speaking the way that we speak in real life. I think that internet speak has bled into real life, and I’d rather see it go the other way. I think there’d be a whole lot less keyboard warriors if we imagine a person on the other side, and we converse the way we would on the street or at the pub.
What makes online and digital journalism so unique to you?
I think all creators and journalists have an incredibly privileged platform, and we have a duty to use it with that in mind. Not everyone has the opportunity to speak to people from this position and I don’t take that lightly, so I make sure that I’m remembering that every time I make anything, I’m communicating. I remind myself that I’m not in an echo chamber, and there’s people here who’ll be affected by what I do.
If you could go back 5 years, what advice would you give yourself?
I feel like I’d give myself the same advice I’m giving myself now, and it’s not easy to hear because it’s so contrary to how we can often feel in a position like this - you deserve to be here. Imposter Syndrome runs rampant in creative industries because creativity is so subjective. But reminding ourselves that we don’t need to be coy or bashful about compliments - or surprised that we achieved something when we know that we did a good job - can be incredibly healing. I’m not there yet, but maybe if I’d had that kind of awareness and implemented that self-talk 5 years ago, I’d be more inclined to believe it! I’m working on it though!
Where do you see yourself in the future and where would you like your work to take you?
It’s such a funny question because I couldn’t tell you, even if I wanted to. I didn’t plan to be where I am now, but I know I didn’t just stumble here without trying. I’d like to say that I see myself continuing to be creative, and strengthening that muscle for the rest of my life. I never want to be in a boring job, doing something I don’t care about so I’ll say that I’d like to see my work take me as far away from boring monotony as possible. I want to continue being challenged, and connecting with people.
Is there any upcoming work from you or the team at Junkee we should keep an eye out for?
We’re building out our Music vertical under the guidance of Ben Madden, Alice Griffin and Lauren Jones. These guys are powerhouses, with vision and commitment to boot. I’m incredibly keen to be a part of the next phase of the Music vertical expansion where we’ll be creating new formats, speaking to more artists, rocking up to more events and covering way more music in an unexpected way. That’s the goal, and I reckon we’ll get there.
And lastly, what are your content pitching preferences?
Flick me an email anytime!