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Major Trends

Major Trends

By the Project for Excellence in Journalism

In this, the fifth edition of our annual report tracing the revolution of news, several trends bear particular notice heading into 2008.

These trends add to those we have discussed in earlier years of this report. In the inaugural State of the News Media report in 2004, we outlined the broad contours of the revolution in news. Journalism is not disappearing, we concluded, but it is changing. Consumers trust and rely on journalists less, and expect more of them, because they have alternative sources of information. In subsequent years we have tracked the splintering of journalism into new norms, including the rise of a new commercially driven Journalism of Affirmation, the shift at many traditional news outlets toward becoming niche products, the emergence of what we call the new Answer Culture in news, and growing doubts about the ultimate potential of advertising online. We have also outlined ways in which newsrooms of the future probably need to change.

The study, which we believe is unique in depth and scope, breaks the news industry into eight sectors (newspapers, magazines, network, cable and local television, the Internet, radio and ethnic media) and builds off many of the findings from a year ago.

This year, we have a special report on the future of advertising, a survey of journalists, and a new comprehensive study of the content of the press.