Journalist Salary By Experience
|Experience Level||Low Hourly||High Hourly||Low Annual||High Annual|
|20 Years +||$18.18||$48.66||$37,810.00||$101,210.00|
'Journalist' is a broad term for any professional who practices in the field of journalism or mass communication. Many people interchange the term with other words like reporter, news correspondent, news announcer, radio broadcaster, and newscaster.
There are various types of journalist and their functions wholly depend on the nature of their role. Several are listed below:
Investigative journalist is a professional who focuses on gathering information on a particular subject (person, event, or organization) with the purpose of uncovering the truth. Investigative journalists present their news through an accurate and factual style. In many cases, they gather their data through secretive means, such as paying insiders for information and shadowing uncooperative or recalcitrant sources. Their work can have a significant effect, usually adverse, on the public image of their subjects.
Documentary journalist relies on "documenting' reality to present his or her story to the public. They do this by filming a particular subject and recording everything the subject does with minimal boundaries. Through an "observer" approach, the journalist intends to provide his or her intended audience with clear and vivid images and scenes that would then give them an experience on top of factual information.
Sports journalists are those who cover significant sporting events such as the Super Bowl, the NBA Finals, or the Kentucky Derby. Many sports journalists enter the industry with wide background and extensive knowledge about the sport they cover.
Photojournalist, as the term suggests, is a type of journalist who is an expert in taking pictures and other images that are essential to a certain story. While this position may involve all basic and advanced principles of photography, photojournalists employ ethical standards and impartiality whenever they take pictures for a story.
Despite the significant differences between the different types of journalist, their role remains the same - to seek out news and bring it out to the public as quickly as possible. Journalists, particularly those who are assigned to cover live events, international conflicts, and investigative reporting, risk their own safety to gather information so that they will have news to deliver.
As of May 2011, there are 45,270 professionals working as journalists in the United States. Included in the number are reporters and correspondents. The median journalist salary in the country is $34,870. Journalists in the top 10 percent of the demographic get paid with a journalist salary of over $75,420 per year. Those who are in the bottom 10 percent earn $20,000 or less.
The majority of professional journalists in the US are employed by newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishers. Around 30,200 work in the said sector and are making an average journalist salary of $39,130 a year, which is higher than the national average. Radio and Television Broadcasting companies employ the second largest concentration of journalists, approximately 10,480 of them. The average salary for journalists in this employment sector is $51,410 per annum.
Other employer types that offer high employment rates are; information services ($56,890), 'cable and other subscription programming', and educational institutions ($49,990) like colleges, universities, and professional schools.
Journalists who consider high income as a career essential should explore the opportunities in the motion picture and video industries, where the average journalist salary is $100,200 per annum. Companies involved in enterprise management also pay high rates for qualified journalists as the average salary is pegged at $58,360. Local government agencies also provide substantial journalist salary rates at $52,140 per year on the average.
There are various factors that influence journalist salary rates by employer type. Insurance and benefits, working hours, working environment, and stress levels are among these variables.
Employers prefer to hire candidates who have at least a college degree in the fields of journalism, mass media, and communications. There are certain cases where degree holders of English, Political Science, Economics, Sports Science, Psychology, and Business Administration are considered for journalistic positions if they have strong English and communications skills as well as extensive experience like campus journalism and community journalism.
Among the programs college students have to take to complete a college course in journalism or mass media are ethics, political science, history, English, sociology and economics. Internships are offered as well, giving college students to gain experience and establish contacts within the media industry which will be useful once they graduate.
Many employers tend to give consideration to candidates who have affiliations with recognized organizations. Such groups include the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA), the Society of Professional Journalists, the International Journalists' Network and the Native American Journalists Association (NAJA).
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the journalist profession will decrease by 6 percent within 2010 to 2020. This is in contrast to the average across all professions, which typically fall between 10-20% growth.
The decline is caused by the consolidations of many news organizations. In particular, the print media has suffered great decrease in readership, which led to the shutting down of several newspapers and other printed forms media. The decline in readership is primarily contributed to the emergence of the internet, which allowed people to access information such as news online and for free.
Viewership in TV news programs have also decreased. This means that many news programs are struggling to make financial ends meet since decrease in audience shares also equates to less advertisement deals and sponsorships, which is the main source of revenues for most TV news programs.
Jobs prospects for journalists are very limited. Still, the advent of online journalism has opened many opportunities to those who still want to build a career in journalism.
The majority of journalists start their careers as writers, researchers, and cub reporters, depending whether they work in the print media or in TV and radio. As they gain skills and knowledge, they are promoted to higher positions that entail more responsibilities such as editor, publisher, TV anchor, and radio announcer.
Others are provided with their own columns and host their own radio and TV news programs. Further advancement may require advanced education and experience in a particular field. One of the highest positions a journalist can attain to is the head of media affairs of a company.
Journalists may also venture out to other industries and fields. Their background in mass media gives them an edge in getting jobs in the areas of public relations and marketing and advertising. Those who are passionate about teaching can venture into the academic field and become college instructors.
Still, there are those who operate as freelance or independent journalists, most of which are involved in investigative journalism and sell their stories to media outlets.
The following are professions closely related to the journalist occupation:
One has to be very dedicated if one wants to become a journalist. The profession demands excellence, dedication, and in many instances, sacrifice. Journalists should be naturally adept in communication and people skills, so as to communicate effectively with colleagues and contacts. They must also be able to maintain objectivity in their reporting, so as to minimize bias. This is a tough profession, so stamina and persistence are essential, in order to uncover the truth under sometimes difficult circumstances. With current market conditions, finding a job and maintaining stable employment may be difficult, so journalists may find themselves in constant competition with others as well as feeling compelled to work long and irregular hours. However, while the profession is tough, it also brings unique rewards. Many journalists feel very passionate about their job, which is to uncover important truths and bring them to the attention of the public.