Survey Asks: “What’s It Like to be a Journalist in 2020?"


A new 10-minute survey is asking local journalists and news publishers to share their story and experiences as part of a project examining the health of local newspapers. The project is supported by the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University and is seeking to find how local news is coping with COVID-19, corporate downsizing, concerns about  “fake news," mistrust in journalism, “news deserts,” and any and all factors influencing the local news publishing industry

This new study builds on the findings of earlier research performed by Tow in 2016-17, which shared lessons from the perspective of 420 journalists across the United States. By revisiting this earlier study, researchers hope to compare--and contrast--the experience of local journalists in late 2016 and mid-2020, while also highlighting the contemporary characteristics of today’s media landscape. Fundamental to the research is also the desire to hear and amplify the experiences of local journalists working on the frontline during very troubling times.

In this segment of E&P Reports, Mike Blinder, publisher of Editor and Publisher Magazine, chats with Damian Radcliffe, the Carolyn S. Chambers Professor of Journalism at the University of Oregon and lead researcher on the project. Professor Radcliffe not only discusses the study but gives an overall perspective on the news publishing industry and how important these studies are in helping us navigate forward.

Related links:

10-Minute TOW Study sign-up:

FAQ’s About the TOW Study:

Background on the study and findings from the 2016 TOW study:

Professor Radcliffe’s “Article: “231 Ways Publishers Can Make Media Pay:


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