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Cameramen Lined Up

The 2022 American Journalist Study

A National Survey of U.S. Journalists

The 2022 American Journalist study is conducted by Lars Willnat, John Ben Snow Research Professor at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School, in collaboration with Indiana University colleagues, emeritus professors David H. Weaver and Cleve Wilhoit. It builds on national surveys of U.S. journalists in the last five decades, beginning with John Johnstone and his colleagues at the University of Illinois in 1971 and moving east to Bloomington, Indiana, where Weaver and Wilhoit and their colleagues at Indiana University conducted similar studies in 1982, 1992, 2002, and 2013.

This 2022 survey updates the findings of these previous studies, especially the most recent survey of 2013 reported in the book, The American Journalist in the Digital Age, and asks new questions about the impact of social media in the newsroom, the role of the U.S. media in the future of democracy in the United States, and the growing number of threats that journalists have received in recent years. It is supported by the S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and the John Ben Snow Foundation

This new study focuses more on trust and democracy than the previous ones, which seems appropriate given the times we are in now. It provides detailed and comprehensive data on the backgrounds, attitudes, working conditions, and professional values of U.S. journalists, as revealed in these interviews. By comparing the findings of the 2022 wave with those of the previous five major survey studies of U.S. journalists conducted in 1971, 1982, 1992, 2002, and 2013, we can assess what has changed and what has remained relatively stable during the past five decades in American journalism. While the focus of the 2022 American Journalist study is on comparing journalists’ demographics, professional role perceptions, and attitudes toward their work with those documented in previous waves of the project, we also ask journalists various questions that will explore how they think about the news media’s contributions to, and responsibilities for, the future of democracy in the United States.

Download Key Findings of the 2022 American Journalist study here.

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