As the ranks of journalists continue to thin (see our recent story here), the PR industry continues to grow. In a recent story co-published by ProPublica and the Columbia Journalism Review, this trend was examined - and the conclusions deserve strong consideration.

The story cites statistics showing that the number of PR professionals now outnumber journalists by a ratio of three to one, compared to approximately 1.2 to one in 1980. While job growth in PR has grown 30 percent between now and then, it is estimated that the journalism workforce has halved.

According to this article, the balance of power has shifted. Journalists, with limited resources and an overload of work, are relying on PR pros for story ideas and content more than ever. The void that has been created by the collapse of traditional journalism is being filled not by new media, but by public relations.

Another trend contributing to this conclusion is the fact that, until the Internet came along, PR pros had to rely on journalists to tell their story. Now marketers can go directly to the public by posting on their own and others' blogs.

As the story concludes, the news cycle never ends. There will always be competition for mindshare. As the media landscape evolves, it is incumbent upon marketers to constantly evaluate their communication options. As Tom Collamore, senior VP of communications and strategy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce stated, "It's not just press releases anymore."