The true value of journalism

The minister’s comment came in response to a journalist who said there are journalists with postgraduate degrees who start their journalism career with only Tk8,000 a month.

That’s £80 a month, or at PPP perhaps about £240 a month. It’s also a 60% upgrade to those entry level jobs in the garment factories.

Perhaps it’s just a poor country, maybe journalism isn’t a highly paid occupation or possibly there’s very little value in advanced degrees in grievance studies.

26 comments on “The true value of journalism

  1. Perhaps Bangladeshi universities are (rather like British ones) producing far more graduates with qualifications in journalism than there are jobs for them to do?

  2. Even free internships in journalism are over-subscribed. It neatly illustrates the economic illiteracy of many journalists that they are surprised and aggrieved at low salaries in a ‘profession’ where some literally cannot even work for nothing to get a start.

  3. It says that our graduates are not getting worthy jobs despite having invested a significant amount of time and money into completing their graduation

    “Give us a chance so we can discover
    The most valuable ways to serve one another.”

    Friedrich A. Hayek, rapper and economist

  4. “There is also a flipside to this story. I have heard from business owners and managers that they are not getting adequately-skilled graduates.
    Bangladesh’s RMG and other industries are often forced to hire people from neighbouring countries as our graduates are not up to the mark.
    This is a reflection of a mismatch that exists between university education and industry needs.”

    An honest journalist.
    Why aren’t people getting a good salary – because they cannot do the job well.

  5. It says that our graduates are not getting worthy jobs despite having invested a significant amount of time and money into completing their graduation

    Good to see absurd middle-class entitlement exists in non-Western countries too.

  6. “Bangladesh’s RMG and other industries are often forced to hire people from neighbouring countries as our graduates are not up to the mark.”

    Would be great to see them hire some displaced American IT workers.

  7. “[…]our graduates are not up to the mark.” It’s a sad truth: there’s a huge number of graduates coming out of universities in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, but an awful lot of them are utterly, utterly terrible. The situation is even worse than in the West. Obviously a degree in X Studies is going to be worthless whether it’s from Duke or Delhi but a big chunk of their technical graduates are useless too.

  8. The immigration of (in many cases, not really skilled) skilled workers has the same effect on wages for the targeted industry everywhere.

    Whether or not you think that it is a good thing is obviously dependant on your on views and the specific circumstances, except in this case, where it is an absolute moral neccessity to replace all BBC and Grauniad journalists with Bangladeshis.

  9. The immigration of (in many cases, not really skilled) skilled workers has the same effect on wages for the targeted industry everywhere.

    Whether or not you think that it is a good thing is obviously dependant on your on views and the specific circumstances, except in this case, where it is an absolute moral neccessity to replace all BBC and Grauniad journalists with Bangladeshis.

  10. — “I cannot figure out how our businesses can pay graduates less than the income of some informal sectors workers like hawkers or tea-stall owners…a possible explanation is that employers are essentially exploiting workers…I have heard from business owners and managers that they are not getting adequately-skilled graduates…We need to conduct a formal study to understand why our universities have been failing to produce skilled graduates. ”

    It’s excruciating watching the author fumble around, isn’t it.

    Yet he apparently expects people to pay him a professional salary for this stuff.

  11. Who chose to do a journalism degree? The student or the university?
    Demand is there the university would be idiots not to provide the degree, employ some of those unsuccessful highly qualified journalists.

    But demand for jobs?
    Can imagine quite a bit of supply. Which the student could research before even applying to university.

  12. “Demand is there the university would be idiots not to provide the degree, employ some of those unsuccessful highly qualified journalists.”

    Maybe it’s just me, but I suspect a journalist would be far better off having NOT been to journalism school.

  13. Why so many young people want to be journalists is one of the mysteries of the age.

    Perhaps they watched All the President’s Men and thought it was a documentary.

  14. Gamecock, we can agree on that.
    Used to work with a girl who had a journalism degree. Daughter of the local catholic priest, good family life, got her degree in journalism then couldn’t find a job in the field. Ended up working as a civil servant. A job she could have got with just GCSEs.

  15. — “Why so many young people want to be journalists is one of the mysteries of the age.”

    Well, not really. For those keen to avoid working for a living, imagining instead getting paid a huge salary for being an opinion maker, one of the movers and shakers, pushing their student-years’ agenda forever, the dream must be most appealing.

    What we can say with certainty is that anyone with a degree in journalism is stupid enough to get degree in journalism.

  16. a mismatch that exists between university education and industry needs

    A familiar story.

    There are few degrees more redundant than a degree in journalism. In the UK, the NCTJ offers 1 year course for school leavers and 3 month postgrad certificates that are (or at least were) of practical use.

    Many of the kids wanting to enter the trade in London would just do a series (often for more than a year!) of internships while funded by daddy.

    However, editors tend to look at people like this and think ‘yeah, whatever, get a job on the Peterborough Evening Leader first love’.

  17. “However, editors tend to look at people like this and think ‘yeah, whatever, get a job on the Peterborough Evening Leader first love’.”

    This is one of the big problems of the “everyone shall have the degree they want” culture. They expect to walk into a well paid job and be treated as if they have years of experience. None of this starting at the bottom making the tea and coffee and being the general gofer until they’ve proved themselves reliable, that’s for oiks who didn’t go to university.

  18. MC,

    Experience, experience, experience. In almost everything. Find the cheapest academic way to get your foot into someone’s door.

    Degrees are mostly a good example of the problem of supply and demand combined with a failure to understand what university did for people. One of the reasons for doing film studies or computer science was that they had the equipment.

    Business studies? You think some academic who went to university and never left really has any idea about what business looks like?

  19. its actually hilarious that we have more people going to university, a place designed for the era when books were expensive, than ever. But you can get a ton of knowledge for free or very cheaply.

  20. Good points made here . Yes university should be going the way of the dinosaurs in terms of actual utility and the availability of alternative ways of learning things in recent years, but it is not. And of course people paying a lot of money to inefficiently study courses aimed at careers with low demand and high supply suffer problems when it comes to getting a job.

    I just don’t understand why the dam hasn’t broken yet?

  21. “it is an absolute moral neccessity to replace all BBC and Grauniad journalists with Bangladeshis.”

    Something you would think the Guardian would be enthusiastically in favour of but mysteriously aren’t.

  22. “Why so many young people want to be journalists is one of the mysteries of the age.”

    Not at all. They want to change the world.

    Revealing they don’t understand what journalism is.

  23. We should encourage Bangladeshi journalists to move to the UK. There’s definitely not enough diversity at the Graun or the Mirror. How could they possibly object?

Leave a Reply

Name and email are required. Your email address will not be published.