Two Sides of Reporting

January 31, 2011 • Ethics and Quality, Public Relations • by

Polish journalists enjoy their jobs, but at the same time note a continual professional deterioration, according to the Institute of Media Monitoring’s (IMM)  “Journalists 2010” report.

The report found that more than three-quarters of Polish journalists surveyed were satisfied with their profession, with 59% considering it a vocation as well as a passion. Yet a huge gap exists between the current state of affairs and what is desired in the workplace.

Of more than 500 survey respondents, 64% said the driving force behind their journalistic work could be attributed to the expectations of employers. On the other hand,  journalists reported feeling as though their work should instead be motivated by conscience (59%) and codes of ethics (24%).

The rise of the Internet, declining professional standards and media tabloidization were indicated in the disconnect between journalistic work and expectations. Almost half of the respondents cited the presence of many non-professionals in the journalistic field as a major industry problem. Among other significant concerns, politicization of the profession (46%), salary reductions (39%) and manipulations (36%) were mentioned. Almost all journalists participating in the survey reported experiencing some variety of pressure or manipulation, but  only 36% found this to be a significant concern or industry problem.

The IMM survey goes on to examine the relationship between journalists and public relations workers. One of the most interesting discoveries is that almost every second journalist considered becoming a PR professional at some point in his or her career. The lure of higher incomes in the PR arena seems to be of significnace. Assessing the cooperation between journalists and PR professionals, most media workers complained about PR material having low factual values and being irrelevant or unsuitable for the profiles of certain media outlets.

For more on the IMM report in Polish, see here.

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