2015 Topical Reporting, Small Newsroom finalist

Predictions for Journalism 2015


Joshua Benton

Nieman Journalism Lab

Topical Reporting, Small Newsroom


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About the Project

At Nieman Lab, our beat is the future of news — or, perhaps more accurately, how the future of news is being shaped by all the convulsions of the present of news. We’re interested in every step of the news lifecycle — how stories get reported, produced, distributed, discovered, and paid for. As a nonprofit newsroom, we’re able to focus squarely on the content we think will be most useful to our readers. (We have a healthy number of those, across platforms — around 300,000 to 400,000 unique visitors a month, 190,000 followers on Twitter, 40,000 on Facebook, and 23,000 email subscribers.)

The five URLs attached to this entry are only a small fraction of the hundreds of stories we’ve shared with readers over the past year, but they are a sampling of some of our favorites.

  • Predictions for Journalism 2015: A Nieman Lab Series (December 2014)
    Our annual collection of predictions for the new year brought together some of the brightest minds in journalism to say what they believe was coming — or should be coming — in 2015. I’m very proud of how diverse a group of contributors we were able to assemble — far more diverse than the usual collection of white men who opine about what the future will hold. The content benefited from that diversity.
  • The Texas Tribune is 5 years old and sustainable. Now what? (November 13, 2014)
    “The Austin-based news nonprofit has success and a measure of stability with its business model, raising almost $27 million in its first five years. But now the Tribune has to figure out how it grows its audience outside the capitol.”
  • Little Magazines: A Series (September 2014)
    This six-part series looked at the online progeny of what were once called “little magazines” — small literary and political journals who play an outsized role in the culture. N+1, Jacobin, The Baffler, The New Inquiry: They punch above their weight in reach and influence. What’s it like to run a little online magazine in 2014?
  • What does it mean to run “product” in a news organization? Hayley Nelson’s big challenge at Wired (December 19, 2015)
    A deep look at the intersection between “product,” “editorial,” and “the business side” at a legendary magazine that, despite its name, has had its struggles with the transition to digital.
  • A wave of distributed content is coming — will publishers sink or swim? (March 24, 2015)
    This column was both prescient in its discussion of distributed content — publishers publishing their work directly onto social platforms — and key in driving discussion around Facebook’s Instant Articles.