The Tanzania media industry grew steadily over the past two decades. This growth, which primarily occurred in broadcast and online media, triggered a rise in journalism training institutions and an increase in the number of journalism professionals countrywide.
Although much has been written about the intersection of journalism/media and public affairs in Tanzania, not much has been written about journalists. This study profiles Tanzanian journalists at a time when the role of the media occupies the centre stage. Specifically, it seeks to answer this critical question who are Tanzanian journalists?
Among the study’s findings are that:
- A typical Tanzanian journalist is male, below 35 years, with a median age of 28, has an average of seven years of experience on the job, is a generalist, not specialised in reporting one or two beats, and earns not more than Tsh500,000 (USD 217) every month.
- Most Tanzanian journalists now have a diploma and graduate education in journalism and related fields and are in full-time employment. Like their counterparts in other parts of the world, they have embraced social media and messaging apps in their work.
- A reasonable number of the respondents also reported having a fair amount of professional autonomy. However, they feared arrest or detention over their work. Central government officials and police remain the most significant sources of threats for the journalists.
Download: A portrait of Tanzanian journalists.