Read All About It: Nine-Year-Old Novice Reporter Tells Big Story And Takes No Guff

After belittling feedback from her story on a local murder, Hilde Kate Lysiak told the world that she’s a serious reporter.

Novice Reporter Hilde Kate Lysiak

With news happening almost every single second of the day, it’s nearly impossible to imagine that every single story that deserves media attention receives it. The most popular stories often elicit a race between news sources not simply to get the story out first but also to tell it the best.

Nine-year-old Hilde Kate Lysiak has become one of the many budding reporters in the fast-paced world of internet and print news publication. With the help of her father Matthew Lysiak – a former reporter for the New York Daily News – and her older sister Isabel, Hilde transformed her crayon and construction paper project into a the Orange Street News newspaper and website in 2014.

On Saturday afternoon, Hilde received a tip about a police phone call in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, a small town about 150 miles from Philadelphia. Like any endeavoring investigative journalist, she sped to the scene and posted a story and video on her website later the same day. Titling the story “Exclusive: murder on Ninth Street!” Hilde gave details of a man suspected of murdering his wife with a hammer, complete with commentary from Selingrove locals.

If anyone other than a nine-year-old had produced breaking coverage on a potential murder case they would have been hailed as a hero. However, Hilde was met with brusque comments and belittling: on both her Facebook page and YouTube channel. She was informed that she should be playing with dolls or having a tea party, rather than providing real time news stories. Former Selinsgrove mayor Sean Christine even went so far as to say Hilde’s story was nothing more than sensationalist.

This courageous youngster chose to respond professionally on Tuesday. In a video posted on her website, after reading some of the negative comments aloud, Hilde proclaimed, “I know this makes some of you uncomfortable, and I know some of you just want me to sit down and be quiet because I’m nine. But if you want me to stop covering news, then you get off your computer and do something about the news. There, is that cute enough for you?”

With the bad, there always comes a silver lining and many people supported Hilde. A comment on her YouTube page reads, “I see a Pulitzer in your future. Keep reporting the news! (And remember: if nobody gets upset, you’re not doing it right!).” Despite the comments, several Selinsgrove natives were perplexed by Hilde’s work. Anne Carter, a licensed practical nurse, expressed her perplexity on Facebook, saying “Adults in the community are having trouble wrapping their heads around what happened. I can’t imagine how a nine-year-old can cover a story like that.”

Nevertheless, Hilde has every intention of keeping Selinsgrove citizens up to date on the latest news and encourages everyone – naysayers and supporters alike – to be on the lookout for the next issue of Orange Street News.

Photo source.

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