Building a diverse newsroom: 'The network...is the problem'

BuzzFeed Deputy Editor-in-Chief Shani O. Hilton writes about building a diverse newsroom:

The network — on both ends of the equation — is the problem. The journos of color and women aren’t networking with white dudes doing the hiring because it isn’t in their DNA. Call it the Twice as Hard Half as Good Paradox: Many of us are so busy working twice as hard and hoping to get noticed that we don’t do the networking that seems like bullshit but is actually a key part of career advancement.

Meanwhile, the white guys doing the hiring who, at least in my experience, are more self-aware than many people seem to think, are asking their non-white or female journalist friends for names of people to hire. But if we know those people, we’re often trying to hire them ourselves — and besides that, we don’t have some secret diverse pipeline of reporters we’ve been hiding. As one journalist of color put it to me, “Why don’t you get out there and find some of your own?”

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at TBD.com and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.

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