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Is it even possible to "move up the ladder" anymore?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by spud, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. spud

    spud Member

    Not to pile on, but this has been on my mind of late. If we are to assume that when the economy normalizes that our little newspaper niche will continue to deteriorate - or at the very least that it won't be getting any better - what are we left with? Is there any point in continuing on with this profession aside from sheer love of the game? Has the diluded pool of overqualified candidates made this a quicksand job for the rest of eternity for all but the uber-rare, lucky few?

    I'm a young(er) guy, and I'd love to think that there's a path left to be cut, but I'm not sure the ladder to better opportunities exists anymore. Is it even possible to move on up without Peter Gammons-like contacts?
  2. RickStain

    RickStain Well-Known Member

    IMO, no. But your results may vary.
  3. zebracoy

    zebracoy Guest

    I was thinking about this as well, and I don't think so.

    With nobody hiring, where's the room to move?
  4. Gomer

    Gomer Active Member

    The new "moving up the ladder" is "staying on the ladder."
  5. BitterYoungMatador2

    BitterYoungMatador2 Well-Known Member

    How the hell do you move up a ladder when 89 percent of its rungs have been hacked off with a chainsaw?
  6. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    Shoot video of your futile attempt to climb it, then put the video online. For free.
  7. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    (Fixed) I don't know how you do it when people in their 70's and 80's are hanging on to jobs in a dwindling market.
  8. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Get a blog and call Muhammad Ali a douchebag. Accuse Michael Phelps of using roids. Spout off about your theory that the NFL gets a cut of the action from Vegas but doesn't share it with the NFLPA. You'll be a star.
  9. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    Dan, tabloid journalism at it's finest. If that's where things are going, I'm not sure I have a desire to part of the march to hades.

    Seriously, it will be interesting to see where things are when the smoke clears in a year or two or three or whenever.

    Most of the decisions being made today are economics driven and not journalism driven. Was discussing this today with someone and saying maybe the silver lining is that the corporate chains who are in it solely for the money will wake up and get out and find some other industry to cannabalize and media outlets will again be owned by someone else who actually has an interest in the product.

    Jobs will come back, whether in this form or some other form. I got out of newspapers in the early 1990s and got back in 10 years later, after several other ventures. I understand that option to come back will always be there if/when the itch strikes me.

    The jobs may be different. Maybe the public won't care so much about a beat writer travelling with the Yankees and writing game stories and sidebars, because they see it all on live television now. But there will be other capacities.

    A lot of industries are going through these sort of times right now.
  10. WriteThinking

    WriteThinking Well-Known Member

    The path will be more circuitous, involving more lateral moves, and probably, more niche-driven jumps, just because that will be the nature of the business -- fragmented, niche-driven and specialty-oriented.

    And that will go for whatever people may cover/work on, and also how they may do it.

    For instance, in the past, a traditional copy editor who was likely to remain a copy editor for many years, if not forever, might, in the future, be a traditional copy editor in one job, but then move on to a position/place where he/she would be an audio or film editor, or some such thing, in the future.

    A baseball beat writer at a newspaper is now, and in the future, more likely to move on to a baseball-only specialized Web site.

    A person might be a blogger in one job and a broadcaster or videographer in another.
  11. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    True dat.
  12. HorseWhipped

    HorseWhipped Guest

    One of the more-disturbing trends I have seen in the past 15 years or so is that the corporate managers rate your status when you walk in the door and don't let you ascend from that.

    So you get pigeon-holed for the job you came in at, with no room to grow.

    What a mistake. People have left and gone to lesser papers -- not lately, because of the economy -- because they had proved that they were ready for the next step up, only to be told that the company is searching for a good outside candidate.

    What bullshit. Great newspapers, if there are any left, know how to develop talent inside and then reward them when they prove they can take on more responsibilities. And I say this as someone who has been allowed to climb that ladder, but it hurts every time I see good talent leave my paper because they want a chance to spread their wings.

    Most of them wanted to stay. Most of them really did not want to leave.

    And then they left.
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