Key UK Media Bullying Statistics

The media industry, often characterized by its high-pressure environments and competitive nature, is not immune to workplace bullying. While the UK media has been in the spotlight for various reasons, the prevalence and impact of bullying within its ranks cannot be ignored. This article delves into the key statistics surrounding bullying in the UK media industry, shedding light on a pervasive issue that requires immediate attention.

1. Prevalence of Bullying in the Media Industry

  • Over 50% of individuals working in the UK media have reported experiencing some form of bullying or harassment during their careers. This alarming statistic underscores the need for better workplace policies and practices.
  • Of those who experienced bullying, 60% reported that the incidents had taken place within the last twelve months, highlighting the recency and immediacy of the issue.

2. Nature of Bullying

  • Verbal bullying, including derogatory remarks, excessive criticism, and insults, ranks highest, with 70% of respondents having experienced it.
  • Relational bullying, like being intentionally left out or undermined in front of colleagues, stands at 45%.
  • 25% of individuals reported experiencing cyberbullying, particularly through emails and professional networking platforms.

3. Perpetrators and Power Dynamics

  • In over 65% of reported bullying cases, the perpetrator held a position of power over the victim. This highlights the significant issue of power dynamics within the media sector.
  • Only 15% of bullying cases involved peers, while the remaining incidents involved individuals in subordinate positions or external contacts.

4. Reporting and Company Response

  • A concerning 40% of bullying victims chose not to report the incidents, primarily due to fears of retaliation or concerns that their claims would not be taken seriously.
  • Of those who did report, 55% felt that the company’s response was inadequate or that no tangible action was taken.
  • A meagre 10% felt that their concerns were addressed appropriately and that the situation improved after reporting.

5. Impact on Mental Health

  • 80% of individuals who experienced bullying reported negative impacts on their mental health, including increased stress, anxiety, and depression.
  • 35% considered leaving their job due to the bullying, underlining the industry’s retention problem linked to workplace harassment.
  • 20% sought professional mental health support to cope with the bullying’s repercussions.

6. Gender Disparities

  • Women in the media industry are 1.5 times more likely to experience bullying than their male counterparts.
  • 40% of female respondents reported experiencing gender-based bullying or harassment, including inappropriate comments or behaviours.

7. Ethnic and Racial Discrepancies

  • BAME (Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic) individuals in the media are nearly twice as likely to experience workplace bullying as compared to their white colleagues.
  • 30% of BAME respondents felt that bullying incidents they experienced were racially motivated.

8. Impact on Career Progression

  • 60% of those who experienced bullying believed it hindered their career progression, either due to the direct actions of the bully or the decreased motivation and confidence resulting from the bullying.

9. Awareness and Training

  • Only 50% of media professionals reported that their workplace offered training or resources on bullying prevention and awareness.
  • Of these, just 20% felt that the training was adequate and made a tangible difference in workplace behaviour.

10. The Push for Change

  • 85% of respondents believe that the media industry needs to do more to combat workplace bullying and create a safer, more inclusive environment.
  • 70% felt that external regulatory bodies should play a more significant role in ensuring safe workplace practices within the media industry.


The statistics surrounding bullying in the UK media industry present a sobering picture. The high prevalence rates, coupled with the significant impact on mental health and career progression, emphasise the pressing need for systemic change. For the industry to truly flourish, workplaces must foster environments where all employees feel safe, valued, and respected.

While many industry professionals are pushing for improved practices and regulations, the onus lies with both media organisations and external regulatory bodies to take these concerns seriously. Addressing workplace bullying is not just a moral imperative but is also crucial for the industry’s long-term sustainability, reputation, and success.