Millie Roberts is the Social Justice Reporter at Junkee and Executive Producer for Backchat on youth community radio station FBi 94.5FM. She started her media career at the University of Sydney where she edited the student newspaper Honi Soit in 2018, before joining NewsCorp’s delicious magazine a year later. Millie has freelanced for the Guardian Australia, VICE and NITV, while also having completed internships at that’s life! magazine and the ABC’s 7.30 program.
You recently joined Junkee Media as a Social Justice Reporter. What have been some of the highlights?
It’s been really fab getting to know the team at Junkee, and diving straight into hard-hitting social justice stories. Speaking directly to members of different communities and marginalised groups has definitely been the biggest highlight so far, including diaspora, students and activists commenting on various topics close to their hearts.
You are also the Executive Producer of FBi Radio’s flagship news, current affairs and politics show Backchat. Tell us a little about your role and how you juggle it alongside your role at Junkee.
I’m really lucky to work with our talented, creative, and driven team at Backchat who are always going above and beyond to help pull together the weekly radio show. It’s really a group effort and I’m grateful that everyone puts their hand up to help wherever they can, while also making top-notch content. I’ve recently stepped into more of a mentor and strategy role on the show, so I can better support my producers, reporters and presenters in bringing to life the angles and stories they’re passionate about.
How do you gather ideas and research for your stories?
Social media has proven really helpful to scope out what people my age are thinking about, care about, and want to talk about. Facebook rally events, Instagram stories, tweet storms and even TikTok videos are also really useful. I like to keep an ear out to what my friends are discussing, and tend to ask questions and actively listen to new people I meet for a different perspective or fresh take.
From print, online and video, what has been your favourite medium to work in?
They say it’s a dying industry, but print will always have a special place in my heart from my days editing the student newspaper at university. There’s so much creative freedom in laying up the words you’ve written with graphics and images to conjure a reading experience that can’t fully be replicated online. Plus, the feeling of holding the final copy in your hot little hands is such a thrill.
As close runner ups, I also love the speed and accessibility of online news and the storytelling capacity of radio.
For a press release to stand out to you, what should it contain?
Access to talent, especially people with lived experience, is super helpful!