Columbia Journalism Review

Getting Over Ourselves

In late January, over the course of a week, a lousy journalism job market became truly awful. About 1,000 journalists learned they were being laid off, at BuzzFeed, HuffPost, and Gannett, marking a grim record for an industry that has traded in bad news for a decade. By habit, reporters turned to Twitter, mourning for friends who had been cut, venting about their bosses, and desperately beginning a search for work.

It was at that point that the jeers began. A chorus of online trolls began mocking the misfortune of laid-off reporters, saying, basically, that they had it coming. That escalated into increasingly vicious and personal attacks, racist and anti-Semitic, including a meme calling for reporters to be killed. Finally and inevitably, President Trump joined the fray, predicting more bad news for the press—and, he said, rightly so.

Journalism’s response was largely to lock

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