Funny thing about digital media…surprisingly few people know what it is meant by the term, and even fewer understand how large the industry is compared to physical media. It recently took me a half hour to explain to family what “digital media” is, and I was immediately met by another half hour of being told how everyone prefers newspapers.
Web writers rejoice though; vindication is finally ours, because there are officially more jobs in digital media than there are in newspapers. That whole “newspapers are going the way of vaudeville” has been a thing since at least the late 2000s, but we’ve got a chart, dammit!
As can be seen above, the Bureau of Labor Statistics via the Nieman Lab, reported nearly 197,800 Americans working in Internet publishing and broadcasting. The newspaper folk had only a measly, pathetic 183,200. Okay, okay, they both round up to 200,000 on a good day, and we’re not entirely sure on just what the hell happened in 2001, but at the rate things are going, one is clearly going up and the other is going down.
This interesting reversal of fortunes first occurred in October 2015… I knew all those Halloween stories I wrote were good, but not that good!
Reportedly, that’s not just hopeful speculation… well, it’s hopeful on my side of the situation since sources indicate that we can expect newspapers to dry up soon. According to Neiman Lab “It’s safe to assume that newspaper jobs will continue to evaporate. Most small and mid-sized metro papers are struggling to find new revenue as print advertising and circulation decline and online advertising fails to make up the difference.”
Radio and television jobs are also said to be dwindling, which has been evidenced by massive layoffs in Disney, Time Warner, Viacom, Sony Corp. and NBCUniversal, leading analyst Hal Vogel to say “The 30-year expansion in cable networks has pretty much ended. You can’t just keep growing.”