Ready to Hire a Freelance Journalist: The Change in Estonian Newsrooms’ Willingness to Outsource
Journalistic Content Production
Karlstad University, Sweden
University of Tartu, Estonia
ABSTRACT: This paper explores the change in Estonian media organizations’ readiness to cooperate with freelance journalists. The interviews with editors of newsrooms of magazines, newspapers, and radio and television broadcasters were conducted in 2014 and 2019. The findings were additionally tested in the conditions of the Covid-19 crisis in 2020. The paper outlines how over the five years the editors have not only changed their perception of who freelance journalists are but how they express the readiness to outsource content from journalistic entrepreneurs. We conclude that the Estonian media market shows signs of adopting diverse collaborative forms that diverge from the journalistic field. The freelancers’ concept has changed, indicating integration of journalistic and entrepreneurial roles – the entrepreneurial journalist is seen less as the odd-jobber working on commission and more of a business partner.