Tuesday, July 21, 2009

In their dying industry, how long can journalists stay?

Even if this piece is written almost two months ago, I still find it refreshing and inspiring. Addressing the 2009 UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism class last May, San Francisco Chronicle's Barbara Ehrenreich argues why journalists are here to stay. At a time when media and press communities all over the world grapple for survival and relevance, it's an insightful reading for journalists and citizens alike.

Welcome to a dying industry, journalism grads

Barbara Ehrenreich
Sunday, May 31, 2009

The dean gave me some very strict instructions about what to say today. No whining and no crying at the podium. No wringing of hands or gnashing of teeth. Be upbeat, be optimistic, he said - adding that it wouldn't hurt to throw in a few tips about how to apply for food stamps.

So let's get the worst out of the way right up front: You are going to be trying to carve out a career in the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. You are furthermore going to be trying to do so within what appears to be a dying industry. You have abundant skills and talents - it's just not clear that anyone wants to pay you for them.

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