CALL FOR PITCHES: Upcoming Hostwriter publication “UNBIAS THE NEWS. How diversity can save quality journalism”

Deadline Jan. 15, 2019

Hostwriter is a non-profit network founded by journalists that helps colleagues to easily collaborate across borders. With almost 4,000 members in more than 135 countries at all all levels of media, we are experiencing first-hand the value of diversity in the field of journalism. However, we see that the modern face of journalism does not reflect this. White, male, western voices still dominate and are often privileged over others, which means that we are not getting the whole story, or the most accurate one.

Whether it be sexism, racism, ableism or border controls holding people back, we want to call attention to the barriers preventing journalism from being a field that holds a mirror up to and truly reflects society. We want a journalism that isn’t stuck in the 20th century idea of journalism as a “view from nowhere,” claiming to be neutral, impartial and objective. We hope a book on the subject could be a good first step toward defining and spreading awareness of unconscious bias and lack of diversity in today’s journalism.

The goal of “Unbias the News” is therefore to:

  • raise awareness of why a lack of diversity in the field of journalism is a problem and why it’s not a choice, but a necessity to improve the accuracy and quality of journalism reporting, and
  • to sketch out what a “diversity mindset” in journalism could look like.

We are calling for pitches for contributions to this book from all over the world. Journalists and journalism scholars are warmly invited to send a brief pitch (50 to 100 words max.) by January 15, 2019. Pitches will be accepted written in English, Arabic, Spanish, French, Chinese, Portuguese, Hindi or German, and selected contributors will work with regional editors to contribute a final piece by the end of February 2019.

What kind of contributions are we looking for?

•       Essays focusing on first-hand experiences of discrimination or lack of diversity in journalism

•       Arguments/ opinion pieces putting forward ideas on how to make journalism more inclusive and address gaps

•       Creative writing or academic pieces on the topic of diversity and journalism

•       Reports from the field about parachute journalism, barriers to travel, etc.

…In short, we want a multi-faceted view on the subject of diversity in modern journalism and would love to read your take.

The 30 most outstanding pitches will be selected for publication in consultation with regional editors from the Hostwriter Ambassador Network. Those selected for contribution will be compensated at €120.

Please mail your pitch to diversity@hostwriter.org by January 15th for consideration.

To read Hostwriter CEO Tabea Grzeszyk’s Medium article, “Diversity Matters! It’s time to define new journalism standards,” click here.