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Women, Minorities Lose Some Gains in Radio Newsrooms

Women, Minorities Lose Some Gains in Radio Newsrooms

As radio newsrooms cut staffs, the percentage of minorities working in those newsrooms has dropped as well.
That’s among the findings of a survey released by the Radio-Television News Directors Association and conducted by Ball State University.
The percentage of minorities working in local radio news last year dropped to 7.9% in 2004 from 11.8% in 2003.
Yet the numbers don’t tell the whole story. Bob Papper, who conducted the survey for RTNDA, said that while the percentage of minorities in radio appeared to drop, the ongoing consolidation of radio newsrooms and significant shifts from year to year on which stations respond to the survey make year-to-year comparisons difficult.
The percentage for minorities working in TV news was fairly consistent; minorities comprised 21.2 percent of local television news staffs in 2004, compared with 21.8 percent in 2003, according to the survey.
The percentage of minority radio news directors is rising, from 8% in 2003 to 11% in 2004. TV’s gain was slight: 12.5% in 2004, compared with 12% the previous year.
The story for women in radio newsrooms isn’t good: the percentage of women radio news directors is down to 21.3% in 2004 from 2003’s 25.2 percent. For TV, the figures are essentially flat, with the percentage of women in the television news workforce at 39.3% in 2004 vs. 39.1% in 2003.
Approximately 400 radio and 1,200 TV stations participated in the survey.
Read the report here.