GITNUX MARKETDATA REPORT 2024

Journalism Statistics: Market Report & Data

Highlights: The Most Important Journalism Statistics

  • Only about 17% of journalists in the US are self-employed.
  • The median annual wage for broadcast news analysts was $46,270 in May 2019.
  • Women make up only 41.7% of newsroom employees.
  • In 2016, only 17% of the news stories were about women.
  • Over 73% of journalists surveyed said that they prefer to receive press releases via email.
  • 25% of U.S. adults have paid for a news application or digital news subscription within the past year.
  • 63% of Twitter and Facebook users get their news from these platforms.
  • In 2020, fewer than 200,000 people in the U.S. were employed at newspapers, a decrease from from peak of about 458,000 in 1990.
  • 70% of US adults say that they lost trust in local news media in recent years.
  • More than 50% journalists said they never use social media to source for stories.
  • The ratio of public relations workers to journalists in the United States is estimated to be 4.6 to 1.
  • It's predicted that digital ad revenue will surpass print ad revenue in the newspaper industry by 2021.
  • Nearly 20% of reporters live in three cities: New York, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles.
  • Journalists make an average salary of $45,925 per year.
  • In 2018, 37% of surveyed journalists stated that leading a normal life was impossible.
  • Almost 59% of journalists feel that the public has lost trust in journalists.
  • The deadliest country for journalists in 2019 was Mexico.
  • More than 92% of journalists have a bachelor's degree.
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Table of Contents

Welcome to our insightful exploration of Journalism Statistics. Journalism and statistics are intertwined in today’s fast-paced information age, where precise quantitative analysis underpins most news stories we encounter. This blog post will delve into the vital role that statistics play in modern journalism, from shaping engaging narratives, verifying facts, to making information more comprehensible for the audience. Whether you’re a seasoned journalist, a budding writer, or a curious reader interested in the backstage of media, this exploration will give you a fresh perspective on how raw numbers turn into newsworthy stories.

The Latest Journalism Statistics Unveiled

Only about 17% of journalists in the US are self-employed.

Interpreting the insightful statistic that only about 17% of US journalists claim self-employment, our readership discerns a clear trend about the landscape of modern journalism. This percentage becomes indicative of a professional tendency towards traditional employment routes such as print, broadcast, and online media houses, which may provide a sense of job security, continual paycheck, and access to resources as compared to the uncertain terrain of freelance work. For aspiring journalists, understanding this figure is crucial as it can guide them in charting their career pathways – to navigate the industry’s risks and rewards, whether they opt for the stability of established companies or embrace the autonomy and flexibility associated with self-employment.

The median annual wage for broadcast news analysts was $46,270 in May 2019.

Peeling back the curtain on the economics of the journalism industry, one finds the median annual wage for broadcast news analysts striking a balance at $46,270 in May 2019. This figure, an integral part of our exploration into Journalism Statistics, paints a stark portrait of the financial reality these professionals face. It doesn’t just denote the midpoint of earnings, ranging from neophytes to decorated veterans; rather, it sparks a discourse on the financial dynamics impacting journalism as a career choice, the stark income disparities within the industry, and the evolving value of broadcast news professionals in our digital world.

Women make up only 41.7% of newsroom employees.

Within the realm of journalism, often referred to as the ‘Fourth Estate’ for its crucial role in informing the public and checking on power, one statistic raises reflective questions about the degree of democratic representation in this field. Women represent only 41.7% of newsroom employees, a figure which echoes deeply in the dynamics of storytelling, types of stories prioritized, and perspectives represented in the news narratives. This numerical imbalance suggests unutilized potential as, seemingly, more than half of the newsroom insights and viewpoints are expectedly colored by male experiences and perspectives, creating possible blind spots in our news landscape. Therefore, these numbers deliver a significant invocation to re-balance the gender scale in journalism for a more representative and holistic view of our world.

In 2016, only 17% of the news stories were about women.

Highlighting the statistic that reveals that a mere 17% of the news stories in 2016 were about women, underscores the prevailing gender imbalance in news coverage. The figure shines a spotlight on journalism’s role in shaping cultural norms about gender, and raises profound questions about whether the sphere is predominantly male-dominated. With news bearing an enormous influence on public perception, this low percentage signifies a need for a more balanced representation of genders in news narratives. This data might be an impetus for journalists and media houses to make a concerted effort to profile, spotlight, and share more stories about women, thereby challenging the existing narrative crux.

Over 73% of journalists surveyed said that they prefer to receive press releases via email.

Highlighting the preference of over 73% of journalists for receiving press releases via email functions as a crucial revelation in our exploration of Journalism Statistics. It underscores an integral shift in the industry’s practices, reshaping the way information is disseminated and consumed. This insight not only provides a valuable compass for Public Relations professionals and communication departments but also challenges traditional methods of engaging with journalists. It reveals the momentum of digital transformation, emphasizing the significance of technology in shaping the contemporary landscape of journalism. This statistic is instrumental in helping individuals and organizations effectively harness the power of digital media to reach their intended audience.

25% of U.S. adults have paid for a news application or digital news subscription within the past year.

An intriguing portrait of the changing landscape of news consumption in the U.S emerges when considering that a quarter of all U.S. adults have forked over cash for a news application or digital news subscription within the past year. This insight underscores not only the trend of traditional print fading and digital platforms rising to prominence, but also signals a pivot in user commitment—people are not just passively scrolling through headlines, but investing in their informational sources. As such, journalism must adapt, innovate and sharpen its digital prowess to capture and satisfy this growing appetite for online, subscription-based news content. This transition has implications on the strategies employed, including the type of content produced, marketing approaches, and the consideration of paywalls over free content, essential for any journalism institution seeking to make headway in this digital era.

63% of Twitter and Facebook users get their news from these platforms.

Delving into the digital newscaping, a riveting revelation underscores a profound shift in news consumption. With around 63% of users sourcing news from social platforms like Twitter and Facebook, the traditional newsroom narrative is being progressively upended. This significant percentage illustrates how social media is not merely a connection tool anymore, it’s steadily morphed into an influential news portal. This suggests a scenario where citizens are not just passive news consumers, but have the leverage to circulate or even shape stories—consequently, redrawing the demographics of journalism and reinforcing the indispensability of digital agility among contemporary journalists in their pursuit for audience engagement.

In 2020, fewer than 200,000 people in the U.S. were employed at newspapers, a decrease from from peak of about 458,000 in 1990.

Illuminating a poignant shift in the journalism landscape, the drastic downward trend from 458,000 newspaper employees in 1990 to less than 200,000 in 2020, demonstrates the profound change in how news is consumed in the U.S. This metamorphosis, largely induced by the digital revolution, signals a move from traditional print media to online platforms. Not only does this statistic spotlight the pressing challenges traditional news outlets face in maintaining their relevance and economic sustainability, but it also underscores the stand online journalism has taken, significantly influencing how news narratives are crafted, presented, and received today. Consequently, anyone interested in the future of journalism must understand these evolving dynamics.

70% of US adults say that they lost trust in local news media in recent years.

Highlighting that 70% of U.S adults have lost trust in their local news media over recent years paints a stark portrait of the seismic shift in the landscape of journalism in the post. The percentage, steep and startling in itself, uncovers the underlying crisis of confidence faced by the media industry, underscoring a pervasive sense of distrust. This points to an urgent call for those in journalism to reflect, reassess their ethics and the quality of their reportage. On the other hand, for consumers, the figure brings to the surface significant questions about their sources of news, the authenticity of which is paramount in an era where information can make or break societies.

More than 50% journalists said they never use social media to source for stories.

In the constantly evolving realm of both journalism and social media, a surprising revelation shows that over half of the journalists don’t resort to social media as a trove for unearthing stories. This insight contracts our modern assumption that in today’s hyperconnected age, social media is a crucial vehicle for driving journalistic narratives. Discerning this figure in our blog post on Journalism Statistics challenges our comprehension about the tools and methods at the disposal of journalists, forcing us to rethink the contemporary dynamics intertwined with journalism.

The ratio of public relations workers to journalists in the United States is estimated to be 4.6 to 1.

Peeking behind the curtain of media dynamics, the estimated ratio of public relations workers to journalists in the United States is a telling 4.6 to 1 – a metric critical to understanding journalism’s current landscape. This figure not only highlights the crowded information marketplace journalists navigate but also suggests the potential challenges they face in checking and balancing narratives pushed by an overwhelming force of PR professionals. For anyone immersed in the study of journalism statistics, this ratio underscores the intricate dance between those creating storylines and those tasked with perceptive, unbiased reporting.

It’s predicted that digital ad revenue will surpass print ad revenue in the newspaper industry by 2021.

Foretelling a pivotal shift in the media landscape, the prophecy of digital ad revenue overtaking print ad revenue in the newspaper industry by 2021, vividly underscores the unstoppable trend towards digitization in journalism. Reflecting the migration of readers and advertisers to online platforms, this statistic hints at the waning dominance of traditional print media and the burgeoning potential of digital journalism. Hence, this transformation not only necessitates a rethinking of journalistic strategies and practices, but also promises unprecedented opportunities for growth and innovation in digital advertising within the sector.

Nearly 20% of reporters live in three cities: New York, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles.

In the pulsing veins of Journalism, specifically in New York, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles, reside nearly 20% of all reporters. Due to the unique amalgamation of power, culture, and media in these cities, this statistic reinforces the geographic disparity in the industry. Moreover, this phenomenon may contribute to a potential bias in news coverage, potentially skewing towards the narratives and happenings within these key cities, and consequently creating an urban-centric perspective in the media landscape. This concentration of reporters, hence, both illuminates the current picture of the journalism workforce distribution and stimulates discussions about its implications on news diversity and representation.

Journalists make an average salary of $45,925 per year.

Unveiling the average annual income of journalists at $45,925 shines a light on the economic terrain of the journalism industry, primary information for those considering entering, or already navigating this field. Not only does it offer a projection of potential income, but it’s a consequential pointer to the value society places on this profession. Whether aspiring students, veteran press members, or policy makers dealing with wage-related decisions, this statistic is a significant anchor within the wider journalism statistics context, providing insights into career prospects and industry sustainability.

In 2018, 37% of surveyed journalists stated that leading a normal life was impossible.

The statistic that discloses an astonishing 37% of the surveyed journalists in 2018 expressing the impossibility of leading a normal life, sheds a penetrating light on the demanding or possibly compromising conditions within the journalism industry. In the realm of journalism statistics for a blog post, this figure functions as an eye-opening revelation, stirring discourse on the personal sacrifices professionals in this field often need to make. Also, it may further ignite discussions and initiatives about the necessity of achieving work life balance in this high-pressure career, hinting towards issues like irregular work hours, workload, and the emotional toll of handling sensitive information.

Almost 59% of journalists feel that the public has lost trust in journalists.

In a blog post exploring the landscape of Journalism Statistics, grasping the nuances of the public’s trust in journalists serves as a critical fulcrum. The striking revelation that about 59% of journalists perceive a waning confidence from the public highlights an ominous shift, injecting a sense of tempering realities into our discourse around journalism. This percentage adds depth in understanding the disjoint between public sentiment and journalistic perception, raises intriguing questions about the factors driving this perceived loss of trust, and sets the stage for introspection within the journalistic community regarding credibility, integrity, and the evolving challenges in the 21st century’s information epoch.

The deadliest country for journalists in 2019 was Mexico.

The statistic indicating Mexico as the deadliest country for journalists in 2019 provides a sobering insight into the risks faced by reporters worldwide in the blog post about Journalism Statistics. These figures weave a tale of caution for those wishing to delve into the field, especially in regions grappling with political instability, organized crime, or significant social struggles. They highlight the stark reality of hazards journalists encounter while covering challenging stories, emphasizing the profound courage and dedication required in this profession. Not only does it shed light on the perils involved in journalism, but it also underscores the urgent necessity to enhance the measures protecting freedom of the press globally.

More than 92% of journalists have a bachelor’s degree.

Delving into the realm of journalism, the statistic revealing that over 92% of journalists hold a bachelor’s degree imparts a crucial narrative about the prevailing landscape of this field. It underscores the incontrovertible importance of higher education in fostering a comprehensive understanding of journalism principles and ethics. It presents a clear correlation between academic accomplishment and professional competency in journalism, thus indicating that to excel in this demanding and dynamic domain demands more than just the art of storytelling; it necessitates an in-depth and structured academic background. This enlightening piece of data, therefore, embodies a clarion call to aspiring journalists contemplating their educational paths.

Conclusion

With the rapid evolution of information technology, accurate journalistic statistics are more crucial than ever. These statistics give us invaluable insights into the practice, efficiency, reach, and impact of journalism. They help us understand audience demographics, their interests, time spent consuming news, the effectiveness of different distribution platforms, and more. Above all, they provide a more decisive understanding of how truth and information are received by audiences. Therefore, a thorough grasp of journalism statistics is essential for anyone involved in the news industry, whether they are reporters, advertisers, or policymakers.

References

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FAQs

What is journalism?

Journalism is the activity of gathering, assessing, creating, and presenting news and information. It is primarily for public presentation and consumption, done by every medium possible, including print, television, and the internet.

Who are journalists and what do they do?

Journalists are professionals involved in the process of journalism. They research, write and report stories about events and people, often providing a publicly significant perspective. They traditionally work for newspapers, magazines, and broadcasters, but with the rise of digital media, many work for online news platforms as well.

What are the types of journalism?

There are several types of journalism, the most common ones include investigative journalism, news journalism, photojournalism, broadcast journalism, and data journalism. Each has its unique approach and method of disseminating information to the public.

What is the importance of journalism in society?

Journalism plays a crucial role in a democratic society. Its primary function is to inform the public, thus allowing individuals to make informed decisions. It acts as a watchdog against corruption and abuse of power, contributes to the free exchange of ideas, and holds those in power accountable for their actions.

What are the principles of journalism?

The principles of journalism include the pursuit of truth, accuracy, fairness, and impartiality. They also include independence from those they cover, accountability for their actions, and an obligation to serve the public's interest. These principles guide journalists in their mission to inform the public while respecting the rights and reputation of the subjects of their reporting.

How we write our statistic reports:

We have not conducted any studies ourselves. Our article provides a summary of all the statistics and studies available at the time of writing. We are solely presenting a summary, not expressing our own opinion. We have collected all statistics within our internal database. In some cases, we use Artificial Intelligence for formulating the statistics. The articles are updated regularly.

See our Editorial Process.

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