Sunday, April 10, 2011

44.7% of Bay Area journalists hit by downsizing

A new survey finds that 44.7% of Bay Area journalists say they have been laid off, accepted a buyout or voluntarily left their job during a period of downsizing during the past 10 years.

More than 700 current and former Bay Area journalists participated in the survey, called the San Francisco Bay Area Journalist Census. The chart below shows how many of them lost their jobs by year.

The survey attempted to assess the job experiences of journalists. A couple of points from the summary:
    • Only 3% of respondents categorized themselves as currently unemployed, 2% were retired, and 15% described themselves as workers or students in fields other than journalism. More than 70% were working as journalists or journalism entrepreneurs.
    • More than two fifths of respondents said they were employed as much as they wanted between Jan. 1, 2000 and Dec. 31, 2010. About one quarter of respondents reported experiencing less than one year of unemployment or underemployment; less than 5% of survey takers said they were unemployed or underemployed for more than five years during the same period.
    • The vast majority of respondents who were currently employed reported “effective written communication” (85%) as a skill that helped them get or keep their current job. More than two thirds of respondents said they believe they need to acquire or develop multimedia skills to improve their employment prospects.
Here’s a link to the summary. The entire 20MB survey can be downloaded here. Click “regular download” for a free download.

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