Diversity in the newsroom
How the news media is diversifying its coverage and newsrooms was a hot topic on Wednesday.
In a “State of the News” roundtable, The Wall Street Journal’s Editor In Chief Matt Murray acknowledged brand has more work to do, reports Ad Age's Garett Sloane. “The current moment, like a lot of companies, has brought some urgency to us and the need to go faster and make even more significant progress. But what we’ve seen is that a greater perspective of backgrounds also brings deeper perspectives on news and how we think about stories and areas of coverage,” Murray said.
Vice Media's Jesse Angelo, who serves as president of global news and entertainment, said it’s clear news organizations haven’t done enough in diversity and inclusion, noting it begins with transparency. “The industry has to open up its kimono.” Angelo also pointed out that everyone on the NewFronts state of the news panel was white, which is an obvious problem.
In Forbes’ presentation, the organization highlighted the appointment of Sade Muhammad, who created the representation and inclusion practice which will “help brands advocate for, and support, diverse identities and their allies in business and entrepreneurship.”
Outside of the news room, day three also took a look at how the industry can move beyond words and take action in ending racial injustice. During a Town Hall that closed out the day, Cavel Khan, chief revenue officer at Tumblr, pointed out how general market agencies are able to take on multicultural business and planning, but a multicultural or Black-owned agency doesn’t have the opportunity to take on general market accounts. “Why isn’t a Black-owned agency an AOR for a Fortune 500 company?” he asked. Khan also called on the ad world to help diversify its middle ranks, saying there is a “muddy middle” that’s hard for Black people and other minorities to move beyond.