Communicating with the masses from isolation: Lessons for the future of hybrid work from the activities of local television journalists during COVID

Publication Type:

Journal Article




<p>Intro: In response to the COVID-19 crisis, many local television (TV) newsrooms decided to have employees work from home (WFH) or from the field rather than from the newsroom, creating a kind of hybrid work characterized by flexible work location.</p><p>Methods: From a review of research on telework and WFH, we identified possible impacts of WFH on work. Data are drawn from interviews with news directors and journalists and observations of remote work and analyzed through the lens of activity theory.</p><p>Results: We found that through creative application of technology, WFH news workers could successfully create a newscast, albeit with some concerns about story quality. However, WFH did not seem to satisfy workers’ needs for socialization or learning individually or as a group.</p><p>Conclusions: Lifted restrictions on gatherings might mitigate some of the experienced problems, but we expect to see continued challenges to news workers’ informal learning in hybrid work settings.</p>

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