10 Tips for Creating a Successful Membership Organization

There are no silver bullets, no hard-and-fast rules, no magic answers to running a membership-driven news organization. It takes a lot of effort, coordination and putting members at the core of everything. Media consultant Tim Griggs shares 10 essential ingredients for making it work.

Want To Help Investigative Startups in the Global South? Fund Them.

A new report highlights the obstacles to survival for media startups in the Global South, and checks in on the progress of two dozen of them to see how they’ve fared over the past three years. It includes advice from some of these outlets’ editors for those thinking of launching their own startups. A recurring theme: Before you do anything else, secure a couple years’ worth of funding.

How Foundation Funding Is Shifting International News

Funding by private foundations is filling gaps in mainstream news coverage, especially in areas like investigative, international and local journalism. However, researchers have found that this funding is inadvertently shaping the boundaries of international nonprofit journalism.

New Models: How Academics, Nonprofit News and Government are Collaborating

The Global Reporting Centre has launched an ambitious project investigating labor abuse, environmental impact and corruption in global commerce. Here’s the Centre’s Peter W Klein on how Hidden Costs will bring together award-winning journalists, scholars and major media organizations — including the New York Times, PBS Frontline, the Toronto Star, Smithsonian Channel, NBC News, DigitalGlobe and Google News Labs — to undertake investigative-reporting projects.

What a Failed Media Startup Can Teach Us About Involving Readers in Reporting

Canada’s OpenFile had an elegant concept. They would ask readers to tell them what they thought was important and make editorial decisions around that. But the platform’s initial success couldn’t be sustained as it struggled to make money and maintain the flow of reader-suggested stories. Here’s what the OpenFile journalists learned about community journalism along the way.

Tips for Donors 

Interest by the philanthropic community in supporting public-interest media is not new. Donor-supported nonprofit magazines like National Geographic and Mother Jones have been around for decades. The original Fund for Investigative Journalism dates back to 1969, while America’s National Public Radio began in 1971. Following the end of the Cold War, Western governments and foundations pumped billions of dollars abroad, as part of an emerging “media development” field to establish independent news outlets in former Communist states and developing countries. Over the past few years, however, with the Internet-fueled spread of disinformation and a growing global backlash against free expression, donors are taking renewed interest in funding independent journalism.