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  • It's not just as easy as launching a paywall (not that putting up a paywall is always particularly easy either): Transitioning your news organization from an advertising model to one that relies on reader revenue is tricky for a lot of reasons. That's from a new API report by Damon Kiesow, who's held positions at...
  • You could certainly read The New York Times' massive investigation (14,128 words, by my count) into how Trump's "self-made" fortune is not only not self-made but also involves tax fraud. But the Times knows that not everybody is going to do that. So on Tuesday afternoon, at the same time that it published the investigation...
  • "It's one of the smartest, most clever startups I've ever, ever, ever seen." That was how Amy Webb lauded Honeycomb, a new blockchain startup, at this year's ONA conference during her annual tech trends presentation. She highlighted two groups of special guests β€” one being the leadership of Civil, another (but very different in scope)...
  • Enough with the "whack-a-mole" claims that as soon as you ban one fake news site, another one pops up: A report released by Knight on Thursday finds that most of the accounts spreading fake news on Twitter during the election are still active today β€” and that "these top fake and conspiracy news outlets on...
  • Welcome to the jungle, we've got fun and games We got everything you want honey, we know the names We are the people that can find whatever you may need So that's one way that journalists can approach their role. Researchers at the Lenfest Institute and UPenn's Annenberg School for Communication went hunting for news...
  • Imagine a world in which Donald Trump is no longer President.       No, really. Okay, if that concept's beyond your immediate comprehension, let's make the question a bit more concrete: Imagine what'll happen to the news business in a world in which Donald Trump is no longer president. Yes, the Trump Bump in...
  • On June 2, 2016, Tribune Publishing β€” what was at the time the newly spun-off newspaper half of what had for more than a century been known as the Tribune Company β€”Β announced it was changing its name. To…tronc. A name that managed to violate both the rules of English capitalization and the aesthetic sensibilities of...
  • C'mon, guys, look at the source! So if you're assessing the credibility of a possibly fake image online, you're looking at stuff like the source, how many times it's been shared, and what the image shows, right? Not so much, according to a new study out of UC Davis. Instead, what matters are digital media...
  • Surveys about "media trust" suffer from a definitional problem. "Do you trust the media?" is a meaningful question only if we know what "the media" is. Is it The New York Times and CNN? Fox News and Breitbart? Occupy Democrats and your uncle's memes on Facebook? In Gallup's data on that question β€” which asks...
  • Is man flu real? Is jet lag worse when you're traveling east? Does smoking pot make you stupid? These are interesting questions, all of which appeared at one point in "Gut Check," a column from health/medicine/life science site Stat. The column aimed to go "beyond the headlines to make sense of scientific claims." But the...
  • Welcome to Hot Pod, a newsletter about podcasts. This is issue 180, published October 9, 2018. Have the Apple podcast charts felt weirder lately? Here's a familiar scene: I'm trying to pass the time, so I pull up the Apple podcast charts to see what the youths are up to. (Ha.) This was my Sunday...
  • The Trust Project, which launched last November as an effort to provide more clarity around who's behind news by labeling articles with "nutrition label" indicators like author expertise and type of story, announced Tuesday that it's added a bunch of new publisher partners. (You'd be forgiven for forgetting exactly which one The Trust Project is....
  • An incomplete list of attempts to finance local news: For-profit newspapers and TV stations siphoning advertising dollars Billionaire benefactors who don't always play nice and/or play music Started-from-scratch scraggly independent outlets started by bought-out or laid-off reporters A chain-based model scattered across towns with appealing demographics Organizations drawing support solely from foundations and crossing fingers...
  • After leading a cohort of metropolitan newspapers through a subscriptions accelerator this year, Facebook is now kicking off its next round, focused this time on membership in nonprofit and digital-only local news organizations. The membership accelerator, now one of three different threads in Facebook's olive-branch programming for local news, started with an in-person gathering in...
  • There are few things that can drive as much nerdy-media debate as the Microsoft Word versus Google Docs battle, circa October 2018. What psychotic journos are still using Microsoft Word in the month of October in the year of our Lord 2018?!?!?!?! https://t.co/o9wIExluph -- tom mckenna (@tmckenna1) October 1, 2018 Google docs stink. Word for...
  • There are some sites that everyone roots for. Scrappy, beloved. See: The Awl. The Toast. Or not so scrappy, but beloved still. See: Grantland. When they shut down, people mourn them. Then there's The Outline. In April 2016, Joshua Topolsky wrote a Medium post entitled "Your media business will not be saved." Topolsky, the cofounder...
  • The Coastal Courier is a weekly community newspaper in Georgia with an office on Main Street β€” and a VR channel. "Are they adequately meeting the information needs with their technology?" Jesse Holcomb wondered. "Are they carving out a space on social platforms or avoiding them altogether?" Holcomb, a Calvin College professor and former Pew...
  • A friend who works at a major tech platform recently posed an interesting riddle to me. Disinformation peddlers were setting up Potemkin local news sites which republished a mix of valid, truthful wire stories and hyperpartisan propaganda. How should the platform differentiate between these bait-and-switch efforts and the real journalistic outfits β€” say, The New...
  • "Who should be responsible for censoring ‘unwanted' conversation, anyway? Governments? Users? Google?" Breitbart β€” yep, leading the column with a Breitbart story! β€” got leaked a Google presentation, "The Good Censor," that shows how Google is grappling with the question of whether it's possible to "have an open and inclusive internet while simultaneously limiting political...
  • In this ever-changing industry, new roles are emerging that redefine how we do journalism: audience engagement director, social newsgathering reporter, Snapchat video producer. At ProPublica, I've been part of developing a new role for our newsroom. My title is partner manager, and I lead a large-scale collaboration: Documenting Hate, an investigative project to track and...
  • Earlier this year, Vox Media closed the closet on Racked, folding the standalone site into Vox.com itself and introducing a condensed version called The Goods as its own section. Now, a new kind of good is coming to Vox.com. And it's getting a philanthropic boost. Future Perfect, a section led by longtime Vox-er/senior correspondent Dylan...
  • Bots don't actually write Olive Garden commercials, folks β€” at least not yet. These "I forced a bot to watch X" posts are almost certainly 100% human-written with no bot involved. Here's how you can tell. 1/12 https://t.co/4wVxfraqZS -- Janelle Shane (@JanelleCShane) June 14, 2018 But they can get trapped in an infinite loop of...
  • Welcome to Hot Pod, a newsletter about podcasts. This is issue 181, published October 16, 2018. The state of Slate. Two seemingly conflicting ideas can be true at the same time. Here's the first idea, which doubts a line of speculation I've been seeing a lot lately: Panoply's divestment from the content business tells us...
  • Penelope Abernathy's latest report on news deserts is damning. About 1,300 U.S. communities have completely lost news coverage. More than one in five newspapers have closed over the past 15 years. And many of the 7,100 surviving newspapers have faded into "ghost papers" that are essentially advertising supplements. Half of the 3,143 counties in the...
  • It was clear β€” definitely by midnight last night, but also in the days and weeks leading up to yesterday β€” that journalism blockchain platform Civil's initial coin offering, in which it aimed to raise $8 million, was not going to work. Civil ended up raising about $1.4 million, and around three-quarters of that was...
  • "It will probably be all video." In June 2016, Nicola Mendelsohn, Facebook's VP for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, spent several minutes of a panel at a Fortune conference talking about how Facebook was witnessing video overtake text. "We're seeing a year-on-year decline on text," Mendelsohn answered. "We're seeing a massive increase, as I've...
  • WeWork locations, gas stations, local broadcast stations, and now local airwaves β€” Cheddar, the "CNBC for millennials" by Jon Steinberg, is blaring business news at local viewers in multiple ways. On Thursday Cheddar announced that its programming will air for half an hour every weeknight on CUNY TV, the independent station by the City University...
  • When you hear the phrase "right to be forgotten," you may think of the European Union, where right-to-be-forgotten regulations allow nearly anyone to ask (and sometimes force) Google to take down search results they don't like. The result is a clash between free speech, the public's right to know, and privacy. There are legitimate fears...
  • "It is really hard to know what is real in today's society." How do college students consume news and information? The team from Project Information Literacy, with funding from Knight, surveyed nearly 6,000 U.S. college students (at public, private, and community colleges). The full report is here. Our sister publication, Nieman Reports, has a good...
  • News is more unevenly distributed in the UK than income is, according to new research from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. Antonis Kalogeropoulos and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen found that poorer people consume less news than wealthier people and that the difference is particularly pronounced online, where poorer people are less likely to...
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