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Is experience still an asset?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by CarlSpackler, Mar 27, 2013.

  1. CarlSpackler

    CarlSpackler Member

    I have a question -- is there a demarkation point where prospective employers see "experience" as "damaged goods?"

    I've noticed more and more as of late that jobs I have applied for are being filled by recent graduates. Ironically, these are exactly the kind of jobs I was applying for when I was leaving school but was told "We like your stuff but we're looking for people with more experience." I feel like the coin has flipped now, less than a decade later -- newspapers are getting cheaper, so they are viewing experience as a synonym for "Hey, that guy is actually going to expect to get some money" without even bothering to ask if I'd be willing to get screwed over by them.

    Is that just my imagination, or is this a real trend?
  2. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    They see "experience" as code for "wants more money than recent graduates."

    And that has been a real trend for about a decade now.
  3. CarlSpackler

    CarlSpackler Member

    My timing is impeccable.
  4. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    The coin has flipped. It's everywhere you want to be.

    Is it discrimination? Dunno, but sure feels like it, doesn't it?
  5. Roscablo

    Roscablo Well-Known Member

    A paper I interned at, did a lot of part-time and stringer work for, and virtually did the job I applied for my last semester of college didn't hire me because they didn't hire people right out of college. You could probably count the number of people in the newsroom older than 25 on one hand these days.
  6. It is discrimination, but it's legal. You can't really say a reporter in their 30s needs to be a protected class.
  7. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    Wow, and just look at my big, fat typo. :)
  8. SalukiNC

    SalukiNC Member

    Depends, is it a union?
  9. sm72

    sm72 Member

    I think the feeling in the business right now, with a 24-hour news cycle, a focus on social media and online storytelling -- as well as plenty of other factors in a changing business model -- have tuned some editors into the idea that "beat reporter" is a job for young people now. I've experienced both sides of what's described above. My current paper wouldn't hire me out of an internship because it required five years of experience for the opening. Meanwhile, I received offers from other papers because they were looking to revitalize the newsroom and bring in younger people to help the others delve into Twitter, video production and the like.

    Also, as someone above said, young = cheap. That's certainly a benefit for anyone looking to fill a position.
  10. CarlSpackler

    CarlSpackler Member

    Unfortunately, those editors are making an assumption that I actually make money presently. That's one aspect about this that sucks. The other is the perception that being 30 means social media has passed you by. Hell, I was there when you needed a .edu e-mail address to join Facebook. Can't be more familiar with social media's workings than that.

    That's not to say I'm totally sour grapes over primarily young people being hired. I think it's great if that person is good enough for the gig. Talent should trump experience, unless you get a candidate with both. I'm just pissed that I missed the boat on it becoming a trend until I became the old guy.
  11. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    I was working online at the start of the Internet. Same for social media.

    Those points don't seem to register. They see age and perceived salary expectations.
  12. sm72

    sm72 Member

    You were. Most others were not. In the aggregate, someone with more than 5-10 years of experience is seen as too slow for a beat job these days by some editors (emphasis on some). Just relaying what I've heard from hiring editors recently.
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