Decline of Young Journalists

Topic/Area of Concern: The Decline of Young Journalists in the Local Newsroom

There is generally a decline in young journalists in the local newsroom. Benz (2022) noted that the overwhelming challenge the newsroom directors face today is that they are not receiving a similar quantity and quality of applicants for open jobs as they did some three or four years back. Cohen (2019) discussed pay and alternative employment options in related industries as the reason young graduate journalists are not applying for newsroom jobs. This interview and focus group questions aim to discover why this is happening.

Part One: Why is there a decline in young journalists in the local newsroom today?


Part Two: Interview Questions

  1. Why do you think there is a general decline in young journalists joining the newsroom today?
  2. How is the pay impacting the journalism industry’s ability to attract talented young journalists?
  3. Do you think the emergence and emphasis on digitization and companies increasing appetite to create original content have opened alternative, well-paying employment options for young journalists in other industries?
  4. How demanded are journalism skills such as digital skills, storytelling skills and production skills by other industries?
  5. Are young graduate journalists finding job satisfaction in alternative related industries than the newsroom?

Part Three: Focus Group Questions

  1. Today’s topic concerns the decline in young journalists in the newsroom. What are your thoughts about it?
  2. What is your general thought about the pay in the journalism industry and its impact on the industry’s ability to attract and retain talented young journalists?
  3. How familiar are you with digitization and organizations’ approaches to content creation? Do you think they have anything to do with creating alternative well-paying jobs for the young journalist compared to the newsroom?
  4. How can you describe the demand for journalism skills such as digital skills, storytelling skills and production skills in other industries relative to the newsroom?
  5. What is your thought about job satisfaction for young journalists in other related industries relative to the newsroom?

Part Four: Focus Group and Interviews

The primary difference between focus groups and interviews is that interview questions are asked directly by the interviewer to the interviewee, do not elicit any discussion, and involve primarily straight answers, while focus group questions encourage discussions (Guest et al. 2017). However, unlike an individual interview, a focus group does not create straight answers. Instead, it establishes qualitative data that might be challenging to analyze because of the discussion aspect (Doody, Slevin, & Taggart, 2013).


Benz, K. (2022). Newsroom coaching for journalists | i-Media Strategies. Retrieved 28 March 2022, from

Cohen, N. S. (2019). At work in the digital newsroom. Digital Journalism7(5), 571-591.

Doody, O., Slevin, E., & Taggart, L. (2013). Focus group interviews part 3: Analysis. British journal of nursing22(5), 266-269.

Guest, G., Namey, E., Taylor, J., Eley, N., & McKenna, K. (2017). Comparing focus groups and individual interviews: findings from a randomized study. International Journal of Social Research Methodology20(6), 693-708.