US newspapers now employ half the scribes it had a decade ago

New York, April 21 (IANS) The number of newspaper newsroom employees in the US dropped by more than half between 2008 and 2019, from about 71,000 workers to 35,000, says a new study from Pew Research Center.
In 2008, employees in newspaper newsrooms made up about 62 per cent of total newsroom employees in the US. By 2019, the share had dropped to 40 per cent, showed the findings based on analysis of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, US Department of Labor.
The data showed a modest increase in jobs after 2014 in other news-producing sectors, especially digital-native organisations.
The overall newsroom employment in the US declined 23 per cent between 2008 and 2019.
In 2008, there were about 114,000 newsroom employees — reporters, editors, photographers and videographers — in five industries that produce news: newspaper, radio, broadcast television, cable and “other information services” (the best match for digital-native news publishers).
By 2019, that number had declined to about 88,000, said the study from Pew Research Center.
Within each of the five industries analyzed, notable job growth occurred only in the digital-native news sector.
Since 2008, the number of digital-native newsroom employees has more than doubled, from 7,400 workers to about 16,100 in 2019.
In broadcast television, newsroom employment figures have been relatively stable, hovering around 28,000 between 2008 and 2019.
Employment also has remained relatively stable in cable television, between 2,000 and 3,000 over the same period.
In contrast, radio broadcasting has lost 23 per cent of its newsroom employees, dropping from about 4,600 workers in 2008 to about 3,500 by 2019.
Percentage-wise, this places radio behind newspapers as the industry with the greatest decline.
The years covered in the current analysis predate the spread of the coronavirus in the United States.
The economic effects of the virus have led to a fresh round of layoffs, pay cuts and other changes at U.S. media outlets, especially newspapers, the Pew Research Center said.

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