Publishers will soon no longer be able to detect when you’re in Chrome’s incognito mode, weakening paywalls everywhere


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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Ever fall into this trap? (1) You hit a news site’s paywall; (2) being a sneak, you open up the web page in an incognito browser window to get around it; but (3) the news site can tell you’re in incognito mode, figures you’re up to no good, and blocks the story you’re trying to read. Well, (3) is about to go away in the web’s most popular browser; the countdown to your sweet release is on. (Or, you know, you could subscribe.) The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, and The Dallas Morning News — among others — all employ some version of such an incognito catcher. The next version of Google Chrome, due out on July 30, will stop them, rendering their metered paywalls significantly leakier. (In other news: Publishers, apply now for some Google News Initiative dollars! Google’s looking for “creative
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Political news sites are reaching across the aisle (to try and pull some cash out of Google and Facebook’s pockets)


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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Who says bipartisanship is dead? Today’s lions-laying-down-with-lambs moment is a cross-ideological alliance that has the Tucker Carlson-founded Daily Caller working with Mediaite, Raw Story, and others to attempt to wrestle advertising dollars away from the usual suspects. The Wall Street Journal’s Lukas I. Alpert had the story of a political news partnership:
The alliance will offer marketers custom ad packages aimed at politically engaged readers, they said. “This is a way to try to bring some of the ad dollars now being directed at the tech behemoths back to midsize political publishers,” said Andrew Eisbrouch, the chief operating officer and general counsel at Law & Crime [and Mediaite]. “We want to offer a package that is different from what a marketer can get on Facebook or Google.” […] Political ad spending for the 2020 election cycle is expected to hit a record high of $9.9 billion, Continue reading "Political news sites are reaching across the aisle (to try and pull some cash out of Google and Facebook’s pockets)"

Pico wants to inject CRM smarts into news sites hungry for reader relationships


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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When some people start reporting a story, they start by googling the topic. I start by searching it in the Nieman Lab archives. Sometimes you find a plot twist. Pico came on my radar with some emails from the cofounder, Jason Bade, and the news that the Lenfest Institute was providing the startup with $50,000 to test marketing experiments for publishers. As a CRM for media companies, Pico is trying to fill the tech needs that publishers have in building relationships with reader revenue (and the readers behind it, of course). It also recently raised $4.5 million from Stripe, Axel Springer, and others. The only — until I hit publish on this [ahem, you mean “my editor” —Ed.]piece mentioning Pico on our website includes this bit, a not particularly auspicious debut:
Any startup you work with is going to have its own problems. The Austin Continue reading "Pico wants to inject CRM smarts into news sites hungry for reader relationships"

Meet TikTok: How The Washington Post, NBC News, and The Dallas Morning News are using the of-the-moment platform


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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Tired of the trolls and infinite screaming on Twitter? Try the infinite video memes on TikTok — perhaps the most successful new social platform among American young people since Snapchat more than a half-decade ago. And as with Snapchat before it, news organizations are trying to figure out a way in — wading into the duet-laden waters of the newest Next Big Thing, where Generation Z is applying makeup Michael Jackson-style to the tune of Marina and the Diamonds’ “I Am Not a Robot,” recreating their most extreme morning routine to Dolly Parton’s “9 to 5,” dressing up their pets of all sizes with Lizzo’s “Boys,” and more. TikTok is old enough to have guides and explainers in The New York Times, The Verge, The Wall Street Journal, and Slate, among others — read those if you want the full how-to. But for context, TikTok is
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Investigative Network aims to bring more documentary video to local TV (but it’ll need funding first)


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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The video was explosive. It showed Sandra Bland — the black woman who died by suicide in a Texas jail cell after being pulled over by a state trooper who was later fired — interacting with the trooper. But unlike previous video, this one was shot from her own perspective, recorded on the cell phone in her hand. (The trooper had said he feared for his life, but the video showed nothing significantly life-threatening.) When investigative reporter Brian Collister showed it to Bland’s family and their attorney, it was the first time they’d seen it. The attorney was in shock after the clip ended. “Where’d you get that? I’ve never seen that,” said Cannon Lambert, who represented the Blands in their federal civil rights lawsuit. “It wasn’t on anything we had. How is that possible? Where did you get that? That’s her cell phone.” Everything was caught Continue reading "Investigative Network aims to bring more documentary video to local TV (but it’ll need funding first)"

Mandy Jenkins will build McClatchy’s Google-funded new local sites. What’s her plan?


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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The seesaw between platforms and news outlets is culminating in a local news experiment between Google and McClatchy, in which Google has pledged to fund the development of three local news sites over the next three years. It’s the first time the Google News Initiative is actually putting money into building newsrooms that produce journalism, rather than just granting money for one-off projects. This partnership was announced as part of Google’s Local News Experiment back in March (more projects have not yet emerged) and is now gaining steam with its new general manager, Mandy Jenkins. An alumna of Storyful, Digital First Media’s Project Thunderdome, several established and startup local newsrooms, and now the JSK Fellowship at Stanford, Jenkins is now in charge of building these three local news sites — maybe in existing McClatchy markets, maybe not — and devising sustainable business models for them. (To be Continue reading "Mandy Jenkins will build McClatchy’s Google-funded new local sites. What’s her plan?"

Micropayments-for-news pioneer Blendle is pivoting from micropayments


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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People keep wishing for micropayments. (“Just the one article, please! I’ll pay for it!”) But micropayments keep not panning out. And just as the world says a not-particularly-teary goodbye to iTunes, the most talked-about candidate for an “iTunes for news” is undergoing a major life change of its own. One of the more promising micropayment startups has been Blendle, the Dutch startup with millions of dollars in investments from The New York Times, Nikkei, and Axel Springer. Even last year, two more investors put $4 million into the company. But Blendle has yet to turn a profit and is now pivoting away from micropayments to premium subscriptions, cofounder Alexander Klöpping told a Dutch newspaper last week. (H/T to Dutchnews.nl, which had the news in English.) “I can lead a team of 50 people and we have 60,000 subscribers in the Netherlands and hundreds of thousands of Continue reading "Micropayments-for-news pioneer Blendle is pivoting from micropayments"

The Boston Globe’s move into Rhode Island is a bet that the last newspapers standing will have a bigger footprint


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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The Boston Globe, the first local newspaper to have more digital subscribers than print, is now investing in more local coverage. In Rhode Island. After past investments in covering marijuana, the Catholic Church, and health and life sciences (and spinning off the latter two), the Globe’s newest vertical can be found about 50 miles down I-95. Three Providence journalists with more than four decades’ combined experience reporting on Little Rhody news are now officially a remote part of the Globe’s newsroom, writing for residents of the state and not just Bostonians. The Globe is making a bet that the Ocean State is fertile new ground for new subscribers (and they don’t have to worry about printing and distributing newspapers for them). “This is in many ways kind of a digital-age version of what we did many years ago in the suburbs,” Globe editor Brian McGrory said. But now
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Facebook is offering new subscription tools for publishers via Instant Articles


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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Facebook is introducing more tools for users to kick in subscriptions for publishers, but it’s unclear how many subscriptions it will meaningfully drive. The platform has hosted subscription and membership boot camps for publishers before, helping dozens of local news outlets refine their reader revenue strategies. But Facebook has still taken a hands-off approach to, you know, sharing revenue with content creators or members of the industry decimated by Facebook’s and other companies’ digital advertising. Now Facebook is giving the reins of subscriptions via its Instant Articles to publishers, and it won’t be taking the 30 percent cut it usually takes from a similar product for creators. This new product, News Funding, has been in testing for the past 18 months with 40 publishers worldwide, including Tribune Publishing and India’s Business Standard, Mexico’s Animal Político, and paywall tech company Piano, according to Facebook’s announcement:
News Funding Continue reading "Facebook is offering new subscription tools for publishers via Instant Articles"

Here’s The Salt Lake Tribune’s plan for securing 501(c)(3) status


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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The IRS is complicated. So is running a 148-year-old newspaper in 2019. Three weeks and one New York Times profile after announcing its shift to staffers and readers, Utah’s Salt Lake Tribune officially submitted its bid to the IRS to become a nonprofit May 30. The Tribune joins a small handful of newspapers in North America relying on nonprofit status (mostly by being owned by a nonprofit rather than being a nonprofit themselves), but it’s making a new case to the IRS. “This ability to give to seek and share information that’s difficult for residents to do on their own is a fundamental purpose of journalism and it is fundamental of a 501(c)(3),” Fraser Nelson, the Tribune’s vice president of business innovation, told me. “We’re saying that’s what we’re doing already.” Nelson comes from philanthropic and entrepreneurial circles of Salt Lake and identifies with the Tribune’s “super-compelling mission Continue reading "Here’s The Salt Lake Tribune’s plan for securing 501(c)(3) status"

Here’s The Salt Lake Tribune’s plan for securing 501(c)(3) status


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




The IRS is complicated. So is running a 148-year-old newspaper in 2019. Three weeks and one New York Times profile after announcing its shift to staffers and readers, Utah’s Salt Lake Tribune officially submitted its bid to the IRS to become a nonprofit May 30. The Tribune joins a small handful of newspapers in North America relying on nonprofit status (mostly by being owned by a nonprofit rather than being a nonprofit themselves), but it’s making a new case to the IRS. “This ability to give to seek and share information that’s difficult for residents to do on their own is a fundamental purpose of journalism and it is fundamental of a 501(c)(3),” Fraser Nelson, the Tribune’s vice president of business innovation, told me. “We’re saying that’s what we’re doing already.” Nelson comes from philanthropic and entrepreneurial circles of Salt Lake and identifies with the Tribune’s “super-compelling mission Continue reading "Here’s The Salt Lake Tribune’s plan for securing 501(c)(3) status"

What keeps ethnic media strong in New Jersey (and beyond)


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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What news outlets don’t really have a trust problem with audiences? Ethnic media — media outlets that serve specific cultural, racial, ethnic, religious, geographic, or language communities — are pillars in their communities, often rooted for decades and telling the stories of immigration and American life on their own terms. A new report from the Center for Cooperative Media examines the state of ethnic media in and around New Jersey (that definition of ethnic media is theirs), highlighting the work the state’s 119 outlets have already done in building strong ties with their audiences, and the work the outlets need to do to survive in the future. Authors Sarah Stonbely and Anthony Advincula write:
In a sense, the story of ethnic media is the story of immigration. Historically, the sector was established by and for immigrants, and the sustainability of the sector has largely depended on the immigrants that it
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“Inextricably linked”: How Chalkbeat works with local funders to start its local bureaus


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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In the world of working with local foundations to drum up support for local journalism, Chalkbeat has been schooling others since it launched more than ten years ago. The education nonprofit news site works as a network, with overhead and national reporting managed by a core team, and has grown to a 50-plus person staff across its seven metro-based bureaus. Where the money comes from matters for any news outlet, but especially for nonprofits trying to, well, stay alive. By setting up relationships with both national and local education and journalism funders, Chalkbeat has built a system for community support in multiple forms. “We require our bureaus to have the majority of their funding come from the local community,” Maria Archangelo, Chalkbeat’s senior director of partnerships, said. “The thinking of that is, if the local community wants us there, that’s better for all of us.” Chalkbeat was born Continue reading "“Inextricably linked”: How Chalkbeat works with local funders to start its local bureaus"

News outlets post way more pictures of men than women to Facebook


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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Just like in newsrooms, men are overrepresented in the images U.S. news organizations use in news stories posted to Facebook, a new study from Pew Research Center found. Men comprised more than half of the faces in photos accompanying links from news outlets, with as many as two-thirds of the faces pictured. Pew used machine vision to assess this: Researchers analyzed images from 17 U.S. national news outlets — ABC News, BuzzFeed News, CBS News, CNN, Fox News, HuffPost, NBC News, The New York Times, Newsweek, NPR, Time, U.S. News & World Report, USA Today, The Washington Post, Yahoo News, Vice, and Vox — that were included in links posted to Facebook between April 1 and June 30, 2018:
There are several ways to measure how often men and women appear in news photos. One way is to think about all the photos together as making
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Why local foundations are putting their money behind a rural journalism collaborative


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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In the many questions of the future of local news, philanthropy — and more recently, the support of locally-grown philanthropists and funders — is stepping up as a bigger potential answer. But media philanthropy, like most everything else about media, is still largely centered on the coasts and in major metropolitan area — even though most everyone regardless of their ZIP code would like access to relevant, quality news. A handful of local foundations (along with Report for America and Solutions Journalism Network) are now upping their commitment for a journalism collaboration across the Mountain West, a.k.a. where those Rockies go from Montana and Idaho down to New Mexico — focusing especially on rural issues and Native American stories. “The absence of a credible news source for local communities to interact and engage with perhaps would put a [rural] community at a disadvantage. They wouldn’t have Continue reading "Why local foundations are putting their money behind a rural journalism collaborative"

Election-related “junk news” still does well on Facebook, this European study finds


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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As the U.S. media scrambles to do something different besides Youngstown, Ohio profiles of working class voters, the misinformation machines are alive and well in our neighbors across the pond. A study of tweets and Facebook posts related to the European parliamentary elections found that misinformation and “junk news” still flourished on Facebook but seemed to be tamped down on Twitter, researchers at the University of Oxford’s Computational Propaganda Project found. Anti-immigration and Islamophobic writing especially took off. Nahema Marchal, Bence Kollanyi, Lisa-Maria Neudert, and Philip N. Howard collected half a million tweets from April 5 to April 20 that used European election-related hashtags. They examined 137,000 of them which contained a URL that went to one of 5,774 unique news sources and determined that less than four percent of the sources were what they call “junk news.” (Their definition: “Junk
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The power of journalism collaboration is also the power of inclusion — here’s how to harness it


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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As resources (especially locally) in journalism recede, collaboration has emerged as a way to do more with more by sharing skills, networks, and other reporting tools for maximum impact. The third annual Collaborative Journalism Summit, organized by the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University and hosted this year by WHYY in Philadelphia, is, well, a collaborative collaboration geek-out. (There may have been “Collaborate or die” stickers.) A big theme this year was how collaboration can be wielded beyond newsrooms and communities where the overwhelming number of (white) journalists are comfortable engaging. When you are collaborating, who’s included and who’s left out?

Local TV news is still growing (though consolidation’s impact is yet to come)


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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While local TV is by no means perfect — see overblown crime coverage and the faux Momo challenge — it’s one of the most trusted sources of news in the United States. And for the second year in a row, according to the 2019 RTDNA/Hofstra University survey of local TV news directors, local TV news employs more people than local newspapers. (This trend will probably continue after the collapse of the Times-Picayune and the Reading Eagle, and the slicing of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and other local print newsrooms in 2019’s first five months alone.) The 25th year of the survey, which also includes a new infusion of local radio responses, polled 1,310 TV stations and 645 radio news directors and general managers representing 1,938 stations. 706 local TV newsrooms say they produce local news (aired by a total of 1,069 stations), contrary to the trend over Continue reading "Local TV news is still growing (though consolidation’s impact is yet to come)"

Quartz, built on free distribution, has put its articles behind a paywall


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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At its debut nearly seven years ago, Quartz’s model was to be everywhere — not behind a paywall, not locked inside a mobile app, ready to build an audience through social sharing. “In 2012, the very clear strategy for us was to create as little friction as possible to growth, because you start with an audience of zero. We did not want to create any barrier to either discovering or sharing our content,” Quartz publisher Jay Lauf said in a talk here at the Nieman Foundation in 2016. “So whether it was a paywall or an app that you had to go download and that we hoped you would open, all of those things were barriers to introducing a brand-new media property to a new audience.” Having no paywall was “part of the original equation: mobile-first and free, embracing the open web,” he told Frederic Filloux. And it worked:
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Here’s the state of Hispanic media today — and where it goes from here


This post is by Christine Schmidt from Nieman Lab


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“This is a fickle country. They take you in one generation and want to deport you the next,” Alfredo Corchado, the Dallas Morning News’ Mexico-U.S. border correspondent, said at a conference about covering the 2020 election last month. Hispanic media in the U.S. serves one of the fastest-growing demographics in the country, but is trying to find its way as its customers’ habits and preferences shift. While newspapers’ circulation has fallen and accessible radio struggles to secure funding, some experiments in Spanish-language TV investments are bearing out. And digital media like Mitú (which describes its audience as “the 200 percent: youth who are 100 percent American and 100 percent Latino”) is working on straddling the divide between much of the older, Spanish-speaking generations who immigrated and younger generations who rely on the internet and seek media that reflect their own shared identities. Well, that’s all according to
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