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Pay-Per-View Journalism Is Burning Out Reporters Young

July 20th, 2010 07:02 admin Leave a comment Go to comments

Hugh Pickens writes “Young journalists once dreamed of trotting the globe in pursuit of a story, but the NY Times now reports that instead many are working online shackled to their computers, where they try to eke out a fresh thought or be first to report even the smallest nugget of news — anything that will impress Google’s algorithms and draw readers their way. The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Times all display a ‘most viewed’ list on their home pages; some media outlets, including Bloomberg News and Gawker Media, now pay writers based in part on how many readers click on their articles. ‘At a [traditional] paper, your only real stress point is in the evening when you’re actually sitting there on deadline, trying to file,’ says Jim VandeHei, Politico’s executive editor. ‘Now at any point in the day starting at 5 in the morning, there can be that same level of intensity and pressure to get something out.’ The pace has led to substantial turnover in staff at digital news organizations. At Politico, roughly a dozen reporters have left in the first half of the year — a big number for a newsroom that has only about 70 reporters and editors. ‘When my students come back to visit, they carry the exhaustion of a person who’s been working for a decade, not a couple of years,’ says Duy Linh Tu of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. ‘I worry about burnout.’”

Source: Pay-Per-View Journalism Is Burning Out Reporters Young

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