Being Interviewed for Radio

July 23rd, 2008

The studio was softly lit and quiet. Liz was fiddling with controls I didn’t understand as I took a seat facing hers. A very large, yellow microphone presented itself to my face.

Liz had emailed me a day or two before; she was looking to do live interviews at KUOW with someone who might have something interesting to say; she thought of me and the opportunity it would present to raise some awareness. (at right: an array of mics with liz at the controls)

We met about a decade ago at the UW Daily and got back in touch when she moved back to Seattle with her partner. Her interest in journalism has remained and while she is focused on radio and writing, she too developed a diverse “new media” skill set.

Like doctors are the worst patients (to stereotype grossly), I think journalists are hard interviews or, at least for me, guarded interviews. Liz said she wanted to know more about Cambodia and human trafficking; it’s something I’m fairly comfortable talking about but sometimes I feel I get too candid and, with the entirety of Seattle possibly listening, it did give me pause. When I was watching a journalist for L’Express interview Bill Gates he had a list (a long one) of questions and research he referenced. The PR flacks had the same list of questions which they’d reviews and with which they were structuring the interview. So I asked Liz for a few questions to be better prepared. (at left: one very large microphone)

Pulling her headphones over her ears, Liz sat down and placed a stop watch beside her notebook. I’d managed to forget my notes and was hoping I could remember the structure for what I hoped to say. I picked up my headphones then nodded. She began with the prologue and before I knew it she was saying, “Tim, thanks for being here.”

“Well, thanks for having me….”

To listen to the interview click here, choose your preferred player and, if you don’t want to hear about art therapy, scrub in to 4:56. The interview is about 11 minutes long.

My apologies to for not mentioning on air that their grant is helping me return to Cambodia.

And here’s Liz.

The Rise of Human Trafficking
KUOW’s Liz Jones talks with a photo–journalist who’s documenting human trafficking and the sex trade in Cambodia. Human trafficking is a multi–billion dollar industry. More than 30 million people worldwide are victims, according to US government estimates. Most of the victims are women and children. Some are as young as four years old. The United Nations says the problem has reached epidemic proportions in the past decade. Seattle–based photojournalist Tim Matsui has been documenting this issue in Southeast Asia. His recent work focuses on several organizations in Cambodia that help victims recover from slavery–like situations.

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