The State of the Media

Pew Research recently released its “State of the News Media 2014” report, which sheds light on different aspects of media and how it has changed over the course of the past year. The results were relatively positive and optimistic.

Jobs, jobs, jobs

The most promising part of the report was the sheer number of jobs available in the realm of online journalism. 468 digital news organizations accounted for 5,000 jobs.

“In a significant shift in the editorial ecosystem, most of these jobs have been created in the past half dozen years, and many have materialized within the last year alone, according to this new report on shifts in reporting power.”

Although these new jobs do not fully make up for the lost positions in the newspaper industry, they still paint an optimistic picture of the future of journalism.

New methods of storytelling

As young journalism students, we already know about the many tools available for journalists on the Internet and social media. For the older crowd, the report breaks down these new ways to tell stories using mobile and online tools.

“Other digital news producers, especially those that have emerged most recently at the national level, are aimed at  cultivating new forms of storytelling—from video to crowdsourcing to new documentary styles—and new ways to connect with audiences, often younger ones.”

Essentially, Pew is referring to multimedia approaches to journalism and engaging online audiences. Social media is an extremely useful way to forge connections with audiences, find sources and add visual elements to stories.

Making money

Digital journalism has seen a surge of money flow in from venture capitalists and investors in the tech industry.

“Much of this new investment is from people and organizations native to digital. They understand technology innately and succeeded there first, before moving into news. Much of it also comes from deep pockets that can potentially allow for some failure and loss during experimentation.”

While these new sources of financing are exciting, we still do not have any long-term revenue models for journalism. Pay walls have been proven unsuccessful, donations are helpful but not enough. It will take time for this dilemma to be resolved.

But overall, the future of journalism looks very bright.


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