There are so many talented minority reporters and editors. Some are out of work because of layoffs. Many of my friends have left the field because they couldn't get hired or promoted at the newspapers, magazines or television stations they dreamed about as they sat in their j-school classes.
There are plenty of talented black folks in the media to go around. So
it's sad to read in Robert Feder's report that WTTW is operating
without a single black reporter or anchor. To the station's credit,
there is at least one black producer that I know of there.
It's not just a problem faced by WTTW. We produced a story showing that last year
marked the second time in more than 20 years that the number of
minorities hired by daily newspapers is fewer than the number
We found that the
percentage of minorities in those newsrooms increased by less than
one-tenth of one percent, from 13.43 to 13.52 percent, from 2007 to
2008, according to the 2008 Newsroom Employment Census conducted by the
American Society of Newspaper Editors.
Former Chicago Tribune managing editor Jim O'Shea, editor of the new cooperative, responded to the column in Richard Prince's Journal-isms column saying the cooperative is talking to diverse candidates for its staff and board.
People these days are so concerned about whether the media will
survive in this electronic age. My question is whether black folks will survive in the media.