- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 28, 2019

A new study from the University of Missouri has determined that the concept of “journalist” has changed. Researchers pored over 669 recent job announcements from media outlets to find that the desired expertise for journalists now includes web development, audience analytics, a dynamic personality and familiarity with Python, a computer programming language. Any mention of ethics, however, was missing in three-fourths of the ads.

“Only about a quarter of job announcements mentioned professional ethics. And online-only news outlets were less likely to emphasize journalism ethics than print and broadcast media organizations,” writes Denise-Marie Ordway, who pored over the numbers and is managing editor for Harvard University’ Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics and Policy.

“In this era with increasing public distrust of the media, I think ethics is more crucial than ever for the media. Ethics requirements should be highlighted even more,” said Yong Volz, who led the research and is chairman of journalism studies on the Missouri campus.

Meanwhile, things are complicated as news organizations struggle to find revenue streams. So everything counts. Ms. Volz also discovered that newsrooms explicitly state that they want to hire people with certain personality traits.

“We see a lot of descriptions in these job announcements about being enterprising, being energetic, being aggressive, being collaborative, being social. I thought that’s very interesting how personality has become part of the preference in the job announcements,” she said.



And what about the other traditional skill set associated with the press?

“While about 86 percent mentioned writing expertise, less than 45 percent mentioned reporting expertise. About 28 percent mentioned interviewing skills. Fewer than 15 percent emphasized subject knowledge expertise and just over 10 percent mentioned multilingual proficiency. Meanwhile, many employers sought journalists with marketing skills — a skill set rarely mentioned in previous research on journalists’ professional qualifications,” Ms. Ordway said.

THE BREAKING POINT

Sometimes numbers speak the loudest.

“Two weeks ago, I briefed the media and testified in Congress that our immigration system was at the breaking point. That breaking point has arrived this week at our border,” said Customs and Border Protection commissioner Kevin McAleenan, making his announcement this week while standing within a few feet of the border barrier in El Paso, Texas.

His officers have encountered the 100th “large group” of illegal immigrants in fiscal 2019. In March, agency expects to deal with 55,000 families and take 40,000 children into custody. But Mr. McAleenan has even more numbers,

“On Monday and Tuesday, we started the day with over 12,000 migrants in our custody. As of this morning, that number was 13,400. A high number for us is 4,000. A crisis level is 6,000 — 13,000 is unprecedented,” he said.

“On Monday, we saw the highest total of apprehensions and encounters in over a decade, with 4,000 migrants either apprehended or encountered at Ports of Entry in a single day. That was Monday. Yesterday, we broke the record again with 4,117. We are now on pace for over 100,000 apprehensions and encounters with migrants in March, with 90 percent of those — 90,000 people — crossing the border illegally between Ports of Entry,” the commissioner advised, adding that border agents have thus far spent over 100,000 hours on medical care and transport for the arrivals.

“To give you a sense of what that looks like, when I walked through Paso Del Norte Station yesterday, we had quarantine cells for people with the flu, people with chicken pox, people with lice, a tremendous number of different conditions that we are trying to manage every day,” said Mr. McAleenan, who also said the sheer numbers of would-be immigrants in March marks the highest total since 2008.

HELLO MIAMI

The Democratic Party says it is prepared to accommodate up to 40 presidential hopefuls. So let the games begin.

They will in three months. The Democrats reveal that their first presidential debates will take place in Miami on June 26 and 27, to air live on NBC News, MSNBC and Telemundo, the Spanish-language network. Yes, it will take two nights to cover all the hopefuls.

“Miami is a vibrant and dynamic city that reflects the values and diversity of the Democratic Party. I couldn’t imagine a better setting for our first debate,” says Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez.

CNN will host a debate in July; Fox News has been denied access to any of the events.

FOXIFIED

Fox News remains the most-watched network in the cable realm, and has bested news rivals MSNBC and CNN for 17 consecutive years. Now Fox News also rules online, drawing more visitors to its Facebook page than the BBC, the New York Times and a host of other news organizations. So says NewsWhip, an industry group which tracks how global audiences engage with social networks.

Fox News drew 45 million fans to its Facebook page alone last month; in second place was the Daily Mail with 37 million and CNN third with 32 million.

Again, this is Facebook traffic only. FoxNews.com typically draws 1.4 billion page views on its website every month according to ComScore, another industry source.

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POLL DU JOUR

58 percent of Americas say Democrats in Congress should drop “Russian collusion” and move on to other issues; 89 percent of Republicans, 60 percent of independents and 31 percent of Democrats agree.

54 percent overall say Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation was “politically motivated”; 79 percent of Republicans, 54 percent of independents and 33 percent of Democrats agree.

42 percent overall are “pleased” by the findings of the investigation; 69 percent of Republicans, 39 percent of independents and 23 percent of Democrats agree.

39 percent overall are “relieved”; 63 percent of Republicans, 36 percent of independents and 23 percent of Democrats agree.

28 percent overall are “disappointed”; 14 percent of Republicans, 21 percent of independents and 50 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A CBS News poll of 1,002 U.S. adults conducted March 25-26.

• Kindly follow Jennifer Harper on Twitter @HarperBulletin.

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