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Should working at a large daily still be a journalist's goal?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by newspaperman, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. newspaperman

    newspaperman Member

    With large dailies — most recently in Alabama — announcing voluntary buyouts and other large newspapers constantly cutting ties with experienced journalists, is it better to work at small organization? It seems working at a small paper in a podunk town almost guarantees a job, seeing that a large percentage of readers don't have internet.
  2. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Happiness and job security should be a journalist's goal. In most cases, those two are tied very closely together.

    I think being a big fish in a medium-sized pond would offer much better job security than being a medium or smaller fish in a big pond.
  3. Harry Doyle

    Harry Doyle Member

    I suppose if you get a newspaper job in rural Ethiopia.
  4. newspaperman

    newspaperman Member

    Harry Doyle, you'd be amazed at the number of people here in the Southern town I work who do not know how to use the computer or a smart phone. They still depend on our daily paper or TV broadcast to get news. Unemployment is over 20 percent here and boarded-up neighborhoods are rampant. The last thing on these people's to-buy list is a computer.
  5. Gator

    Gator Well-Known Member

    Two words: Family-owned.
  6. Mystery Meat II

    Mystery Meat II Well-Known Member

    Even given the size of the papers, I think the opposite might be true. Big fish in this day and age are the ones that get cut first for having the highest salaries. Smaller fish are more likely to swim under the layoff sonar.
  7. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Prep guys are usually the most immune to layoffs. That's because, not only are they cheap, but if they don't cover that stuff, nobody will.

    But if you're the main beat writer for a SEC team in a SEC town, I think it's safe to say you're not worried about job security.
  8. ColdCat

    ColdCat Well-Known Member

    Trust me, there is no job security in a small-town, family owned paper either.
    My goal right now is to be part of a sports department that consists of more than just one person.
  9. spikechiquet

    spikechiquet Well-Known Member

    Working in family-owned doesn't always mean Daddy Warbucks is a bright, good, jolly ole' egg...

    ...or he just let's Jr. play while daddy's away and Jr. enjoys his golf club membership and dinners with the wife (who's on the payroll while other jobs get cut around them) at the expensive places in town while it's a daily struggle to put out the paper because of lack of bodies in the newsroom and lack of hours in a week since you're hamstrung by no OT and "budget cuts" mean a 12.5% decrease in hours allowed per week.

    Then again...I could be wrong.
  10. I Should Coco

    I Should Coco Well-Known Member

    This was my goal when I started out -- specifically, to work at the Chicago Tribune.

    That was several career moves and many morale-busting budget cuts ago.

    The goal for me now, at my 22,000-circulation daily, is to do my best for a paper that occasionally makes a difference and informs readers about important news ... WHILE ALSO enjoying family life and the great outdoors here in the Northwest.

    As others have mentioned, having a job that contributes to a balanced, overall happy life is the most important "goal."
  11. Editude

    Editude Active Member

    It's difficult, too, when you've worked at major metros and would like to scale back to a smaller pond. Questions are raised about salary and the something-must-have-gone-wrong assumption.
  12. JakeandElwood

    JakeandElwood Well-Known Member

    It was my dream to work on the biggest beat at my hometown paper when I first decided I was interested in journalism in high school.

    Realizing I no longer aspired to that was one of the reasons I ended up getting out.
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