Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Survey finds another drop in minority staffing

Minorities accounted for 12.32% of U.S. newsroom employment, according to new figures in the annual survey by the American Society of News Editors. That's down from 12.79% in 2011, and is the fourth consecutive year of declines.

Overall newsroom employment fell also: to 40,600 vs. 41,600 in 2011.

Many Gannett newspapers participated in the survey, according to a table of individual responses by organization on this page.

Corporate recently said in a memo that it employs more than 5,000 journalists in its newsrooms. But I find that figure very hard to believe. The last time I saw a number on newsroom employment was as of December 2001, when the company said it had 5,614 journalists. Since 2001, GCI's overall employment has been cut 40%, to 31,000. If the figure in this memo is correct, this means newsroom employment has fallen only 11% during the same period.

The newsroom employment census is based on a yearly response rate of 65%, according to ASNE.

"The data from newspapers that returned the survey are used to project the numbers for nonresponding newspapers in the same circulation range," the trade group says. "An ASNE follow-up test of nonresponding newspapers found their employment of minorities closely resembles newspapers in their circulation categories that respond to the survey."


  1. I work at the Des Moines Register and outside of columnist Rekha Basu you'd be hard pressed to find a Latino, Indian, African American or Asian within the building that isn't part of the late-night janitorial staff. I can understand part of the difficulty hiring minorities in a state that is 91.3 percent white according to 2010 U.S. Census Bureau statistics. Obviously, it's not a racist hiring practice, but it does say something about the natural inclination of people to hire workers that look much like themselves without thinking about it.

  2. Wilmington has used hiring minorities as a tool to break the pressroom union, and have tried repeatedly to do the same in the mailroom/distribution center.

  3. Jim, I wouldn't believe anything Gannett prints, so you're probably spot-on there.
    And from what I've seen, there's lots of 20-something minorities in newsrooms.
    They "replaced" 20+ year veterans.
    For 1/3 the pay.

    Just don't tell the customers.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. The newspaper editors hid the lead about how many people they canned: Newsroom staffing hits 34 year low

  6. The gannett talent program is filled with pretty lil white girls whose families have connections with current and former gannett managers. what a fucking farce.

  7. No, 12:54, you are the farce.

  8. How about usa today sites that have illegal aliens working for them...Is that right? yes management knowingly let's this Happen and jokes about them..


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