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Indiana University Documents Journalists' Digital Angst
By: Doug Bedell
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PR people in whatever setting, small town or large, can likely sense in relationships with their media contacts the sentiments and forebodings Indiana University's journalism school is reporting in its latest survey of "The American journalist in the digital age." IU's last such study was done in 2002 and the trends in the meantime have been in a dire direction.

"So what's wrong with the direction?" the Guardian's Greenslade blog asks in its report on the angst-ridden survey. "When asked about the 'most important problem facing journalism today,' the respondents mentioned the following issues: declining profits (mentioned by 20.4 percent); threats to (the) profession from online media (11.4 percent); job cuts and downsizing (11.3 percent); the need for a new business model and funding structure (10.8 percent); and the tendency towards hasty reporting (9.9 percent)."

These sentiments will not surprise PR people, who likely sense them in their interactions with their media contacts, and from the evidence of what they can see in their local (or national) newspapers. If anything, it's surprising there's not greater reportorial concurrence around some of them, like the need for a new business model and funding structure. But the IU survey is a marker for our communication time, and The Guardian has done a service by providing this link to it. 


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About the Author
Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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