Between 2008 and 2019 the number of newsroom employees working for a U.S. daily newspaper halved from around 71k to 35k employees (reporters, editors, photographers, videographers) according to analysis by the Pew Research Center. Although the bulk of the decline took place right in the middle of the financial crisis, it has continued consistently ever since and is not yet showing any signs of slowing down. It marks the ever smaller role U.S. daily newspapers play: since the turn of the century circulation reduced by 55% from 63,3 to 28,5 million (on weekdays, slightly higher on Sundays) while their advertisement revenues fell down from nearly $50 to about $12 billion. Newspapers have not been able to really profit from the steep rise in online advertising: although the share of online revenues increased to roughly 30%, it only accounts for a meagre $3,5 billion, less than 3% of total online revenues in the US (of which Google holds nearly a third). The only sector that has been able to create newsroom jobs, notably in the past few years, are ‘digital native’ websites that have started online and, hence, do not include the digital side of traditional newspapers. They better change their strategy and business models radically!
Graph by PEW Research Center