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Posts Tagged ‘Andrew Beaujon’

Should We Be Archiving Everything?

rookiefreelancing1This Poynter post about Patch removing content from its sites has had me bothered all week. It just doesn’t sit right and raises a lot of questions about what we do with all of our content if things really go south.

The problem, for me anyway, is maybe that we’re calling it content. I know that, technically, it is. And if you call it content, it makes it easier to erase. Because all content does is take up space, and when that space is no longer serving its purpose — bringing in eyes, and clicks, and some sort of advertising money — you clear it out, like doing the dishes after Thanksgiving. The house is a wreck, you clean it up, and it’s like it never happened by the time you call it a night.

But if you start calling it journalism — which it is — it’s a little more tricky. Andrew Beaujon links in that Poynter post to an essay on Medium about trying to archive his work from TBD.com when it shut its doors and asks if deleting content ever affects anyone besides those who work there. I think it does. Sure, you might not need to go back and  read every news article about, say, a government shutdown, but news like that should be saved. Not just for reference or history’s sake, but because a lot of times, good journalism is also teaching or telling you about something new. It’s a resource. Not just a portfolio.

Then again, I save everything. But it’s not like it’s stacks of Sunday editions. Am I being sentimental?

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A Dose of Optimism: J-school Grad Prospects and Website Traffic Growth

There is plenty of evidence for gloom: the newspaper industry is the fastest-shrinking of them all, and the online ad shares of newspapers have sunk to an all-time low. Hopefully, two studies released this week will help lower your blood pressure; auspicious statistics are a rare commodity these days.

As I’ve written about before, studying journalism may not be such a bad idea. A new study from Georgetown University showed that it’s certainly no worse than studying social science, arts, architecture or law and public policy. Recent graduates with journalism degrees had a 7.7 percent unemployment rate (lower than the aforementioned areas of study), with architecture faring the worst at 13.9 percent. Like any other industry, the unemployment rate in journalism decreased with experience and the attainment of a graduate degree. On average, recent grads can expect $32,000, which increases to $58,000 with experience, and $66,000 after graduate studies. The fields with the lowest unemployment rates were health and education, both at 5.4 percent. Read more

Why is Media Criticism Dominated by White Men?

Yesterday, D.C.-based journalist Shani Hilton wondered in the Washington City Paper: “Where are the women and non-white media critics?” Her quick brainstorm of those who’ve achieved prominence included The Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz, NYU’s Jay Rosen, Reuter’s Jack Shafer, and The New York TimesDavid Carr. They all seem to confirm that media criticism is a white-male dominated world.

In it, she quotes Andrew Beaujon, “the new Romensko,” whose theory is that media criticism “is fundamentally an alt-weekly pursuit, and alt-weeklies’ DNA is heavily white and male.” His working theory about the white and male alt-weekly is that “working at such places gives white males such as myself a chance to feel like an underdog for once in our lives.”

Certainly, alt-weeklies are predominately white and male, as is journalism itself—but that fails to take into consideration other venues of media criticism. One may think of The Atlantic’s Megan Garber or FAIR’s Janine Jackson. A commenter pointed out the work of Michele McLellan and Amy Gahran at the Knight Digital Media Center. Nonetheless, is the shortage of women and minorities in media criticism really a cause for wonder? Read more