Thursday, February 19, 2009

DC Press Corps: MSM Down, Niche Media Up

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A three-month study on the scale, scope and nature of the Washington press corps, conducted by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and journalist Tyler Marshall, is now out and the picture is a fascinating one. The story is more about a dramatic transformation than simply a shrinking act. Take note:

* ClimateWire, an on-line newsletter launched less than a year ago, deploys more than twice the reporting power around Capitol Hill than the Hearst News Service

* The DC bureau of Mother Jones, a San Francisco-based nonprofit magazine, has seven reporters, about the same size as the now-reduced Time magazine bureau

* CQ, a news operation that produces an array of on-line and print publications, now has the largest number of journalists accredited to cover Congress

In addition to the decline in the reporting power of mainstream media and the growth among more narrowly focused special interest or niche media, there has been a marked jump in foreign media now represented in Washington. In 1968, there were about 160 foreign correspondents reporting from Washington. In October 2008, there were nearly 10 times as many.

For more on this study, click here:

To see an MF-funded study on the diversity of Washington news bureaus, carried out by UNITY and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University and released in July, 2008, click here:

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