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.
Media startups from the Arab world have had to battle censorship, lack of funding and unstable political environments. In a roundtable hosted by GIJN in December at the Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism forum in Jordan, founders of four startups shared their innovation tactics to survive and thrive, including renting out excess office space, training, events and paid newsletter subscriptions.
Robyn Vinter, founder of a UK-based investigative news website for working-class millennials and people outside the “London bubble,” says she made a conscious choice not to try and make a “big profit” from it. “We’re not trying to be millionaires,” says Vinter.“We’re trying to do investigative journalism, and you can’t really do both, I don’t think.”
There is one thing everyone in the journalism funding ecosystem can agree on — a free press and informed public is crucial in this age of disinformation. When the media, and truth itself, is under growing attack, philanthropic foundations and individuals are stepping up to the plate — from funding efforts to boost news literacy to building centers for investigative reporting.
For there to be real justice in the case of Jamal Khashoggi, the penalty the Saudis pay must transcend time, place and person, and positively advance the cause of journalism and rights of free speech for generations to come, not just achieve criminal convictions, visa restrictions and economic sanctions. Citizen activist Chuck Fall proposes how that might look.
Growing your major gifts program — or getting one started in the first place — can feel like an overwhelming responsibility. The philanthropic landscape is extremely competitive, and the prospect of identifying and soliciting prospective donors can seem cumbersome and intimidating. While the non-profit journalism landscape has flourished, opening up new revenue streams and business models to support mission-driven news, many organizations continue to rely on major gifts from foundations, high net-worth individuals, governments and multilateral organizations for the large investments they need to start up, survive and thrive. The competition for major gifts is intense. The journalism sector has grown robustly in the last several years, which means you are competing with an increasing number of organizations.
The increasing lack of credibility and growing political meddling in Romanian mainstream media in recent years has resulted in many journalists leaving these outlets and starting their own independent sites. Some of these initiatives support themselves by relying on crowdfunding. But is it viable in the long term?
A comprehensive study released earlier this week delved into the nonprofit news sector following the flurry of funding into the troubled US news industry in what has become known as the Trump Bump. Co-published by the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and Northeastern University’s School of Journalism, the study analyzed 32,422 journalism and media-related grants totaling $1.8 billion between 2010 and 2015. Here are some of the major findings.
Raising money for your news organization via crowdfunding is difficult and can be stressful. Hungary’s Direkt36, which has run four successful crowdfunding campaigns so far, offers 10 tips from their experience to help you plan a good campaign. A GIJN original.
Since its creation five years ago, Agência Pública has promoted a revolution not only in Brazil, but around Latin America. It is one of the main drivers of a regional scene that brings together digital native-media founded and led by journalists.