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Abstract Low entry-level pay in TV news is related to an oversupply of job applicants Radio with fewer applicants now pays beginners with journalism degrees higher than does TV Working in television news has become too popular for the good of entry-level pay The average pay for beginners and many others in TV news is unprofessionally low For years entry-level pay in television has been the lowest of all mass media-related job fields It has not quite kept up with the cost of living Media Supply and Demand New college graduates will earn less in TV news than in radio news where pay overall lags television Because of radios low pay its jobs draw fewer applicants at least among journalism and communication degree holders To hire a college graduate with news training radio stations must pay more The profits that newsrooms made for television stations typically were not reinvested in higher pay for the people whose labors enabled the attractive bottom lines News continued its profitability for most stations in the mid-1990s but salaries lagged for most of the people behind the profits1 Both TV and radio have long lagged daily newspapers in starting pay as well as typical pay for more experienced professionals in comparable positions Median entry pay in TV news has even dropped to a tie with weekly newspapers which are usually located in smaller markets TV and the weeklies were paying beginners the lowest of all journalism-related specialties Why is starting pay so much lower in TV news A good part of the answer is a greater oversupply of graduates seeking jobs in this most visible of the news media The supply and demand hypothesis was tested in a study by Prof Becker Prof Joseph Graf of George Washington University Its reported in an article Journalism Labor Force Supply and Demand Is Oversupply an Explanation for Low Wages in the autumn 1996 issue of Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly
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