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MMTC wants to hear more minorities in

radio news
06 December, 2010 04:31:00
Media and Telecommunications Council
exec David Honig says that the employment
level of minority journalists in radio news
departments is far below the percentage of
minorities in the population as a whole, and
adds that they are almost non-existent at
non-minority-owned stations. He wants the
FCC to fix the problem.

Honig said that RTDNA figues place the

minority radio news force at 8.9% of the
total employed, compared to a total minority
population share of 34.4%. he added that
using RTDNA figures as a base, MMTC determined that “…minority news employment at U.S. English
language, non-minority owned radio stations was statistically almost zero.”

Honig argued that casting a wide net is the key to building a diversely-staffed news department, and said
that this wasn’t happening as a rule. He wrote, “The collapse of minority employment in radio journalism
is a result of word of mouth recruitment from a homogeneous workforce. Relying on word of mouth
recruitment is dangerous because the practice will allow non-diverse workforces to consolidate and
replicate themselves over time. Word of an open position will generally extend to employees’ usually
homogeneous family and social groups. If a workplace were homogeneous to begin with, word of mouth
recruitment would reproduce and usually enhance the homogeneity. However, if a workplace were
diverse, the practice would preserve that diversity.”

He noted that promoting diversity has long been a Commission goal, one that has been frequently
reaffirmed, but noted that little is being done to achieve the goal.

In particular, Honig called for better enforcement of EEO requirements, and hoped that the FCC would
soon be collecting better and more comprehensive data once confidentiality hurdles regarding its stalled
enhanced disclosure program for licensees are overcome. Further, he wants the Commission to amend its
regulations to reflect suggestions made by its own Advisory Committee for Diversity in the Digital Age
regarding the career paths and development of diverse job candidates.

Honig made his remarks in the 12/6/10 edition of the organizations newsletter “Broadband and Social

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