Modern digital newsrooms thriving in Australia

A new report finds that digital-only newsrooms are flourishing, despite a narrative of the decline of media.

Through in-depth interviews with their most senior editors, the report provides new insights in to how 21st century digital newsrooms function compared to large-scale newsrooms of last century.

All bar one of the case studies experienced substantial growth in the past five years. This has resulted in digital outlets hiring more journalists, attracting larger audiences, and increasing their revenues. For most, this success has come from diversifying their business model and understanding how to best engage their audience.

The report also finds a close alignment between what journalism schools are teaching students, and the skills that modern digital newsroom require from journalism graduates.

Online newsrooms have adapted to shifting funding sources by relying on hybrid revenue streams, including traditional and native advertising, events and festivals, sale of data and providing skill workshops.

The study was commissioned by Facebook and conducted by Dr Andrea Carson (School of Social & Political Sciences) and Dr Denis Muller (Centre for Advancing Journalism.

Participant newsrooms in the study were Junkee, HuffPost Australia, Mumbrella, Guardian Australia, The Daily Review, Private Media and BuzzFeed.

Interviews were conducted in July and August 2017.

Carson A., Muller D. (2017) The Future Newsroom. Melbourne: University of Melbourne. [PDF]