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The state of worldwide journalism in 2024 – study shows the impact of AI

In a year marked by tumult and transformation, the journalism landscape continues to evolve. Layoffs have struck nearly every major outlet. In fact, more than one-third of journalists reported layoffs or buyouts at their organisation, according to Muck Rack’s 2024 State of Journalism report.

Did your workplace go through layoff or voluntary buyouts in the last year?

Impact of AI

As newsrooms struggle with the reality of shrinking staffs and budgets, they’re also navigating the tricky terrain of generative AI. The technology has the potential to streamline workflows and enhance efficiency, and when asked about plans for AI usage in our latest survey, about 28% of journalists reported using the technology and another 20% plan to explore it, but mostly for behind-the-scenes tasks like brainstorming and research. However, despite the adoption, media organisations are slow to establish AI usage guidelines and policies - nearly 60% report their newsroom has no AI policy - and concerns of disinformation continue to loom.

Do you plan to explore generative AI, like Chat GPT or DALL-E, in your workflow?

PRs and journos

The relationship between journalists and communications professionals remains crucial, but it's not without its challenges. Seventy percent report that PR professionals are at least moderately important to the success of their jobs. Yet, 46% of journalists receive six or more pitches daily, and 49% seldom or never respond due to lack of relevance.

Does your company have an AI use case policy?

Moving forward

As we reflect on these findings, three things are evident: the urgent need for more support and funding to ensure a free and independent press endures, the need for newsrooms to develop clear standards for AI use, and a call for communications professionals to take extra care in this new world order of media relations.

We already see work being done to address these challenges, which leaves me optimistic. Media outlets are exploring new revenue streams beyond traditional advertising, while co-op model collectives like Flaming Hydra are emerging. Major organizations, such as the Associated Press, have also established ethical guidelines for integrating AI tools like ChatGPT into their operations.

How important are your relationships with public relations professional to being successful at your job?

For communications professionals, building stronger relationships with journalists requires concerted effort and mutual respect. Remember to craft concise pitches - 200 words or fewer -tailored to the journalist's needs, and be sure to leverage public relations management software to thoroughly research your target journalist. Journalists in our survey say preferred pitches are sent via 1:1 email before noon.

By establishing clear guidelines for AI usage and fostering meaningful relationships between journalism and communications professionals, we can protect the integrity of the journalism that’s so critical to our free society.


Muck Rack’s 2024 State of Journalism survey was a self-administered survey that collected 1,106 responses from January 3 to February 9, 2024. Most respondents came from US-based journalists, and Asia, Africa, and Europe were also represented.

Muck Rack distributed the survey with the help of nine research partners, including the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Press Institute. Download the full free report here.

Written by Gregory Galant, cofounder and CEO of Muck Rack

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