News is set to become more diversified in 2019, with newsrooms focusing on diversity and gender equality in the news, according to a new report from the Reuters Institute.
The Journalism, Media, and Technology Trends and Predictions 2019 report found the boom of content and intensity of the never-ending news cycle has put immense pressure on journalists, with 56 per cent of newsrooms leaders concerned about diversity in the news.
In the UK, gender equality has spent a fair share of time in the spotlight last year, and many companies were forced to reveal pay gaps between men and women for the first time.
An analysis from Press Gazette revealed 91 per cent of UK-based media companies paid men more than women, with men also occupying most of the senior roles.
Globally, the Global Media Monitoring Project showed women are ‘dramatically under-represented in the news’, with 24 per cent of news subjects or sources being female.
This year, we can expect more journalists to follow in the footsteps of Bloomberg business reporter, Ben Bartstein, who found just 13 per cent of his interviewees were female.
Bartstein sought to rectify that by setting himself a target of 50 per cent, which he reached by proactively seeking out new and more diverse sources and interviewees.
In a Twitter thread, Bartenstein said his focus on securing more diversified sources has given him a competitive edge, and actually leads to more compelling stories with greater impact.
“Last year, just 13 per cent of sources I quoted (62 in total) were women. I was appalled,” he wrote.
“Here I was thinking and talking about diversity on a daily basis, yet my own work didn’t hold up to snuff.”
The report found there will also be an increase in diversity metrics, with more newsrooms using automated tools that monitor gender and ethnic diversity of content on websites by counting the names of interviewees or analysing pictures.
These tools will help journalists and editors become more aware of their own biases.
As the publishing industry and modern media landscape continues to shift, the report noted that journalists and newsrooms cannot afford to distance their readers, which is why in 2019 we will be reading and watching much more inclusive and diversified news.