The miracles of digital media have indeed impacted journalism: Omair Alavi

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1. How did you venture into the field of broadcast journalism?
I ventured into writing when I was in elementary classes at the Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed School. I used to write articles that were appreciated by my colleagues. I remember writing an article on The Power of Seven that discussed seven aspects of various topics such as the seven wonders of the world, seven days of the week, etc. In 1993 Wasim Akram was named as the Pakistan Cricket Captain and an article was published in this regard. I wrote a letter in reply to this article. It was published in US Magazine (The News). I found out that many others had a similar opinion. These replies were published in one article that also received appreciation. When I completed my matriculation, I topped in the English course. This is when I decided to write in English and have been doing so ever since. Later, my friends at college asked me to write for Young World (Daily Dawn). I began writing for the magazine.

2. What do you enjoy doing the most: researching, writing, editing?
I enjoy writing the most. Editing is the most difficult part as I have to point my mistakes or point mistakes of other writers. Research needs a different mental wavelength altogether. Writing is relatively easy and something I enjoy doing.

3. How has digital media impacted journalism?
The miracles of digital media have indeed impacted journalism and journalists. However, pure journalists are pursuing their profession with the same dedication as before. I have seen many journalists become influencers or digital media experts following the emergence of digital media. True journalists, however, are still sincere in their profession and are working diligently as “journalists.”

4. You have interviewed popular celebrities at home and abroad. Share names of a few memorable ones
One of my most memorable interviews was of Late Haseena Moin Sahiba (1999-2000). I also interviewed Nadeem Sahab when I was hardly 22-years-old and it was done during his first TV drama, Bisaat. In 2011, I interviewed Faran Tahir, who played the roles of Raza in Iron Man and Captain Robau in Star Trek. Interviewing the actor playing a Captain in Star Trek was a pretty big deal. It was a highlight of my career. I also interviewed Tom Holland (Spider-Man) and Chris Hemsworth (Thor). Most recently, I interviewed Nauman Ijaz.

5. As a celebrated reviewer of sports and movies, what secrets will you give to aspiring reviewers of the same categories?
I believe you need to be crazy to become a reviewer. It must be in your blood to spill out your opinion. The gist of the reviews should be based on your personal opinion otherwise there is no need to deceive the readers. I present the good and the bad aspects followed by my personal opinion as a verdict. Reviewers should never be personal and must give a neutral review.

6. Your Twitter profile states you interviewed Thor and Spider-Man. Please share how did this transpire?
Sony Pictures was organizing an event in Bali. They invited people from Pakistan and I was one of the lucky ones. I interviewed Chirs Hemsworth in a round table interview and was scheduled to interview him one-on-one the next day. To my surprise, he remembered me when I met him the next day. It was a priceless moment. I also found Tom Holland to be very down-to-earth. His interview went very well and was appreciated upon my return to Pakistan as many TV channels covered it.

7. Your advice for the youth of Pakistan?
Be yourself. Pursue what you think is right. Do not follow others. Be your own identity, so people follow you.


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