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Globally, the prolific way of finding the projects or the plans of our leaders is through interviews. In particular, the agenda of these meetings is to highlight all the programs that politicians are chosen by the electorate set aside to better the everyday livelihoods of people. President Barack Obama is no stranger to interviews like this. For instance, in the year 2014, he was cast in a certain interview hosted by Zach Galifianakis in a comedian mock talk-program known as "Between Two Ferns." similarly, Zach follows the popular protocol while interviewing President Obama, whereby he picks a question and poses it to his interviewee as he gets to wait for the answer. Queries raised by the respondents can be classified as closed, open, leading or forced choice questions, but the roles of these quizzes are similar because they are either asked on purpose, to seek information or to evaluate the interviewees' point of view (Fisher, p.07). Significantly, the tone and choice of questions by an interviewer like Zach brings into the limelight the first agenda(s) of the host.
Following the interview conducted by Zach as he interviewed President Obama, it can be proved that the form in which questions are framed and responded to, matters a lot in communication about the stand held by parties, i.e., interviewee, interviewer, and observers. For instance, on classifying the choice of questions asked by Zach, we can argue that an example of a closed question was when he asked Obama if he sends Ambassador Rodman to North Korea as his representative. The response Obama gives proves that the question was either a yes/no query to verify if it's true or false that he sends his Ambassador on his behalf.
In other instances, Zach asks Obama questions like what he thinks is the first black president, and what his stand was on the issue of the same-sex marriages (Fisher, p.10). The two questions can be classified as open queries because they only require answers based on an individual's point of view concerning the topic in question. Zach proves to have the necessary wit on how to conduct this kind of an interview when he proceeds to wisely choose a question that can be classified as a leading question. The interviewer asks the president about his project named as Obama care with which Obama had initiated targeting the Americans and their health safety. Therefore, it is true to say that Zach asked this question to bring out the leadership quality in president Obama. Lastly, Zach opts to be an all-around interviewer and phrases another query that can be termed as a forced choice question by asking Obama about the issue of the National Security Agency snooping on other leaders' emails and texts. The question forces President Obama to address an issue that was too delicate and maybe he was not at all intending to talk about it while on air.
As aforementioned, interviews are very vital in the world of reporters for they stand out as the foundation of excellent and fruitful reporting. Journalists use interviews as a medium of communication that assists them in comprehending a difficult ordeal and viewing the same from another person's perspective. Interviewers are motivated to go out all over and talk to their persons of interest to evaluate other individual's opinions and judgment but not depending on their personal beliefs. Consequently, they are forced to conduct planned interviews in their reporting areas such as commentary shows and evening news of U.S. just like Zach, the reporters who are the host of the interviews held in programs like the analysis shows, do not forget to observe some highlighted protocols (Bungay, p.19-20). The choice of the questions they ask their interviewees happens to have similar objectives to the questions Zach was asking President Obama. Therefore, it is clear that there is indeed a particular pattern that is observed by most of these reporters. Mostly, the type of questions chosen by the interviewers is determined by the response that the interviewees provide.
Focusing on how the reporters in the commentary show conduct their interviews; they always seem to prioritize introducing themselves first. Hence, it is clear that introducing oneself and the company they work for creates a friendly and a calm environment both for the reporter and the interviewee. The interviewer in the commentary show depicted features like being discursive, personal and subjective. Significantly, the interviewers' end up having fascinating conversations that are even fun to both parties, which is why some of the interviews are conducted for a lengthy period other than the initial planned time. The interviewer of the commentary show, who interviewed Stephen Bungay, ended up having an interview that lasted for four hours, which meant that the two had such a great connection. The free, comfortable environment between the two parties is mostly accelerated by the fact that the question being asked is well structured and timed and the interviewer is aware of the role he wants both the question and the answer to play to the audience.
Picking on open questions, the interviewee is expected to respond by what he believes and to actively defend the reason why he chooses the very side that his answer will be pointing. Mostly, the open quizzes revolve around the most recent issues emerging in the society such as, "should we legalize the use of bhang?" the interviewer is expected to either support or not support this motion, but at the end, he ends up giving a convincing explanation regarding his stand.
Also, interviewers may pose a question that leaves the respondent with no other option other than just giving a straightforward answer that requires no explanation as a supporting statement. This kind of question can be classified a closed question. For instance, in an interview on commentary show an interviewee is asked about why he is decided to vie for the presidency in the U.S. The only way to go about this question is by hitting the nail on the head and giving substantiated reasons why one developed the interest.
The other form of a common question that is popular amongst interviewers including the ones, who reports from the commentary show, is termed as the leading question. In this form of a question, the reporter frames a query to the interviewee targeting on trying to give way on expounding on the biggest role of the individual (Bungay, p.23-24). Precisely, the interviewer aims at bringing out the primary role that an interviewee plays in whatever field they have expertise on. Consequently, it appears that the protocol followed while carrying out interviews is evidently homogenous. Moreover, the aim of conducting interviews is all as a result of attempts to reach a certain agreement with different personal opinions and point of views of different personalities.
The main agenda behind every other form of interview is to try and bring out new information to the light of the audience. By questioning entities of interest, people can base or compare different variables having borrowed crucial information from the horse's mouth. Significantly the two interviews expounded on above proves the point that at the end of every interviewing session, the audience will have different information but one that will be either classified as beneficial or non-beneficial. From our sessions above, it is easier for the audience too, for example, tell how and what President Obama feels about marriage between people of the same gender.
An element of a good interview that stood out from the interviews was the fact that the interviewees were given enough time and space to air out their views. In both the interviews the reporters seemed to respect the code of keeping quiet, for the offered less talking which gave the ones being talked ample time to give vital information without rush (Gubrium, p.56). The people being interviewed in the two interviews were too brief and precise in the sense that they avoided making their responses irrelevant by trying out not to lengthen the answers to seem like they were giving out the form of speech. In instances where the interviewee went out of the track, the reporters were keen and quick enough to focus the interview back on the intended track by alerting the interviewee what the topic was all about.
For instance, Zach while holding his interview he seemed to have a thing for the fact that Obama was a black president. Primarily, the questions that Zach asked President Obama demanded him to be very keen on how he answered them to ensure that what he was uttering would not make him sound as if he was offended by what the interviewer asked. In other instances, the interviewees were supposed to do a little thinking to come up with answers that were convincing enough to make their interviewers dwell on other questions.
If given a chance to conduct the interview, I would have ensured that I stick and observe the fact that I was interviewing the U.S. president, which as a result was too much credit. The reason I would have handled it with care is that I would not have left any room for being criticized by other reporters. The platform that provided this information is at all not in a position to be labeled as an incredible one because it features the necessary elements of the interview that needs to be brought out clearly.
Bungay, Stephen. 'The Hegelian Project.' Hegel Reconsidered Philosophical Studies in Contemporary Culture, 1994, pp. 19'42., doi:10.1007/978-94-015-8378-7_2.
Fisher, Louis. 'Obama.' The Barack Obama Presidency, doi:10.1057/9780230370456.0006.
Gubrium, Jaber F. The SAGE handbook of interview research: the complexity of the craft. Thousand Oaks, SAGE, 2012.
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