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THE WORLD VIEW OF YE ZHU

The news we receive nowadays not only moves quicker, but it also moves further. Information is expedient and increasingly international. More people live and work in countries not of their origin than ever before and these individuals gravitate towards news outlets that communicate in the most intuitive way. Ye Zhu, an enormously talented production specialist, has immersed herself in this world, with experience at SinoVision (the Chinese news platform for expats living in the US as well as those in their home country) and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. By contributing to news outlets in both the United States and China, she has familiarized herself with the tone and benefits of these intermingling cultures. Both have received major acclaim for their efforts.


SinoVision is one of the largest and most influential Chinese American TV networks in North America, with direct television coverage to a population of more than thirty million. Its original documentary series, “My Town, Chinatown” was nominated as part of the 61st Annual New York Emmy Awards in the Historical/Cultural Program. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette newsroom won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Reporting for its coverage of the shooting deaths of eleven people at the Tree of Life synagogue in Squirrel Hill. The Pulitzer Judges called the staff's work “immersive, compassionate coverage ... that captured the anguish and resilience of a community thrust into grief.” As a member of each revered news institution, Ye Zhu has proven her worth as a modern multimedia specialist who is pushing the boundaries of modern news journalism.

Both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and SinoVision’s Daily SinoVision Nightly News boast award-winning news departments. Ye Zhu has spent time in each as a multimedia producer, pitching, shooting, producing multimedia news segments. When performed expertly, this work requires technical skills, a highly developed artistic sensitivity, inquisitive intuition, emotional empathy, self-reliance, and tireless devotion to details. Especially, in regards to her editing work, Ye pieces together shots and footage in meaningful ways by using cuts, transitions, music, and other elements to mold the story into its final form. Instinct is as much a requirement as skill when it comes to someone as accomplished as she.

During the 2017 court hearings of Wulong Chen, Ms. Zhu’s work brought great attention to SinoVision. Chen was the primary suspect of one of the biggest murder cases of the Chinese American community in recent times. He was sentenced with “fourty years to life” in prison after being convicted of fatally shooting a 68-year-old man in Sunset Park over a 20-year-old family grudge. Ye developed a rapport during the trial with the victim’s son who had previously refused to talk to the press, obtaining first-hand information and exclusive interview footage for the story along with the confession tape of Wulong Chen from the District Attorney’s office. Ms. Zhu produced a series of in-depth stories on this case across all platforms of SinoVision, including cable, web, mobile and WeChat (the most widely used and influential social media platform in China). Once published, the Chinese American community was in awe of the peculiar details of this infamous murder case, and how Wulong Chen overturned his confession and yelled out “not guilty” in court right before the verdict. The series best exemplified how to make a cohesive documentary that touches on so many aspects of a legal case and yet never loses its focus or feels superficial. Ms. Zhu managed to turn weeks of tedious and prolonged court hearings into an engaging investigative pieces that combined objectivity, intensity and humanity.

Throughout her time with SinoVision, Ye contributed to covering and presenting content on stories that impacted the Chinese-American community like the livestream 2017 Snowstorm Press Conference hosted by New York City Mayor De Blasio. She knows how to create a cohesive story in a way that is accurate, informative, and empowering to Chinese American communities, who often feel left out by the mainstream media. The works she produced for SinoVision stroke a chord with its demographic and gained a wide range of viewership across all platforms. Several videos she produced for SinoVision made it to CCTV (China Central Television), providing people in China with a glimpse into the Chinese American lives in the U.S. It is with the impressive all-around talents of Ms. Zhu that SinoVision gets to maintain its status as one of the most influential Chinese language cable news networks in the United States. The impact of her work speaks volume about the full spectrum of her talents and contributions to the American society. The aforementioned are only a few examples of how her extraordinary abilities and skills have been critical to propelling SinoVision’s high quality content production to the next level.

As a multimedia production specialist, Ms. Zhu is at the very core of news media evolution and presentation. The major network broadcast gave way to the 24-hour news cycle which is now being replaced by news “on demand” via multiple mediums. Mobile devices, home computers, television; these are all valid means of disseminating news; savvy and mastery of them all to some degree is a present-day requirement. Ye informs, “The digital shift of news outlets nowadays requires a broad range of skills of a multimedia journalist. Just having journalistic instincts and reporting skills is not enough. Being a multimedia reporter also means that you need to excel at shooting photos, videos, and editing, all under pressing timeline. Unlike in other genre such as film production and commercial where everyone only needs to be focusing on their own trade, in the news world, you are your own army of scriptwriter, videographer, reporter, and editor.” Similarly rejecting the sensationalist news approach, Ye reinforces, “You need to find the balance between remain detached observation and have empathy for the people in your news stories. The more seasoned you are, the easier it is for you to be desensitized and forget the sufferings of real people you encounter at your job. I believe that even though news is objective, as a multimedia producer, you need to have empathy when approaching sources. Access is key. More often than not, how you approach people is going to make or break the story.”

Written by Patrick Wilson
THE WORLD VIEW OF YE ZHU Reviewed by JaamZIN on 6:23:00 AM Rating: 5
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