Journalism is in such a state of flux that Harvard undergraduates have become disillusioned with it. Pulitzer training ground the Crimson is suffering, and students considering journalism for a career have been forced to hide their interest lest they be scorned or pitied.
“People will undoubtedly tell you ‘Don’t do it,’” one freshman told Bloomberg today. “I tell my parents, ‘I’ll do this for two years and I’ll go to law school, I promise.’”
Alex Jones, the director of the Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, told the news service it "makes sense" that kids would want to stay away from the field at the moment.
"It’s purely [a] matter of economics, because they’re not stupid,” Jones said. “If the media once again promises the opportunity to do some important work with a decent wage, they’ll be back.”
Emphasis ours, because, yipes. That was kind of an awkward thing to say to a reporter.
We imagine he realized and sort of backtracked, like, "No offense, dude. I mean, you look like you got into this gig a loooong time ago. Like probably you thought you were going to like "change the world" and "speak truth to power" and all that, and instead here you are reporting for a business news service on what deals rich guys are making. And then the Internet was just like, WHAM, and all of a sudden your expense account is gone and no one respects you or your craft and you're just forced to stay in your same crummy job, making your same crummy salary just so you can pay your rent. You're hatin' life, right? Tough times. Well, chin up. Maybe you'll get a buyout or something and then you can start up your own public-relations business. Or at least, maybe someone will take you on as their assistant. Or you could intern at a website. What's that? No, these academic gigs, 'fraid to tell ya, are hard to come by, what with the business as it is. Anyhoo. It's sure been nice talking to you. Always good to interface with 'real reporters' left out there; when you're trapped up in this 'ivory tower' like I am, you forget what it's like down on the ground, you know? Keep keeping on, my brother! Don't let your shoe leather get worn out."