Pew Research Center Releases State of the News Media, Turns Out It’s Not All Bad

pewstatemediaToday, the Pew Research Center released the State of the News Media report. And it’s not as dreary as you might think. They say so themselves:

A year ago, the State of the News Media report struck a somber note, citing evidence of continued declines in the mainstream media that were impacting both content and audience satisfaction. As indicated above and throughout this report, many of these issues still exist, some have deepened and new ones have emerged. Still, the level of new activity this past year is creating a perception that something important, perhaps even game-changing, is going on. If the developments in 2013 are at this point only a drop in the bucket, it feels like a heavier drop than most. The momentum behind them is real, if the full impact on citizens and our news system remains unclear.

You can check out some key indicators for the overall industry here, and they also looked at local television, developments in the Hispanic market and many other segments of the industry.


But the one on the Growth of Digital is my favorite.  They’ve concluded that the “migration to digital has become a stampede,” and that digitally native pubs are hiring at “explosive” rates. One of the most interesting conclusion puts all the whiners about Nate Silver and ‘explanatory journalism’ cynics in their place, or backs them up, depending on where you stand. They write:

For all the expansion, it is far from clear there is a digital news business model to sustain these outlets… Asked if the explosion of hiring suggests that digital news has figured out a successful business model to sustain those jobs, one veteran industry observer responded simply: “No. That’s the irony.”

I think the reason that there’s a sense of activity and less somberness to the report is because of all the game-changing developments in the industry. It’s a transition year. What do you think about the report? Anything surprise or excite you? Tell us in the comments or @10000Words.