Report: South Dakota’s number of statehouse reporters remains flat in recent years

Published: Apr. 5, 2022 at 1:44 PM CDT
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PIERRE, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - A new study found that while the number of reporters covering statehouses increased in most states, South Dakota’s number has remained flat over the past few years.

The Pew Research Center released the results of its study Tuesday, which analyzed the number journalists covering state legislatures and state governments. It compared these statistics to a similar report it released in 2014.

South Dakota was one of three states to retain the same number of statehouse reporters (14) as it had in 2014. The report found 31 states saw an increase in the number of reporters, while 16 saw a decrease.

The total number of statehouse reporters has increased by 11% since 2014, though fewer reporters are now covering state governments full-time, according to Pew. Just under half are currently full-time, compared to 56% in 2014. Researchers attributed to the decline to full-time journalists to several factors, including cuts in the local newspaper industry.

Another notable change in the 2022 report is the increase in statehouse reporters backed by nonprofits. They constituted only 6% in 2014, compared to 20% in 2022.

The study was conducted through a survey of statehouse reporters around the country. Dakota News Now Pierre Bureau reporter Austin Goss took part in the survey.

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