SJRVladimir SolovievMar 31, 2021

40% of editorial offices had to cut a tenth of their staff, and only 1.8% of the media managed to avoid salary cuts. The data was obtained as a result of a study by the Union of Journalists of Russia on the impact of the pandemic on the work of the media industry. The results of the survey were announced by the chairman of the UJR Vladimir Soloviev at the presentation on March 30. The event was attended by the chief editors, heads and journalists of the federal media.

In total, about 400 journalists from all regions of the country took part in the study. The overwhelming majority of the respondents are employees of print media and representatives of online media. About a third of the study participants reported a decrease in circulation and airtime. More than a fifth of their salaries were lost by 17.5% of journalists.

The pandemic has hit ad revenues as well. 86.4% of editors reported a decrease in the number of advertisers and their budgets.

At the same time, a third of the media surveyed attracted new sources of funding in 2020. The most common of these are grants, donations and government contracts. 1.7% of editorial offices had to take out loans. According to the study, as a result of the crisis caused by the pandemic, 44 regional media outlets were closed. Basically, these are regional newspapers.

Almost a third of the editorial offices received support from the regional authorities in connection with the pandemic. And 35.2% of the media took advantage of government support measures after including the media in the list of industries affected by COVID-19.

Among the support measures that the media consider necessary in the current situation, the leading ones are: financing, regulation of postage rates, and the abolition of penalties for late payment of taxes.

“The study allowed us to identify the pain points of the media. Based on the data received, the UJR will form a package of measures that will help editorial offices to overcome the difficulties caused by the pandemic. And we will work to ensure that this support is received by as many media outlets as possible, ”said Vladimir Solovyov, chairman of the Russian Union of Journalists.