BuzzFeed’s strategy for getting content to do well on all platforms? Adaptation and a lot of A/B testing
September 15 2017
How does Buzzfeed get so much of its content to go viral? It employs a complex strategy that involves “tailoring subject matters to the platforms with the most receptive audiences, plus constant A/B testing.”
Are nonprofit news sites just creating more content for elites who already read a lot of news?
September 6 2017
This Nieman Lab interview with Rodney Benson, author of Can Foundations Solve the Journalism Crisis, explores Benson’s perspective on foundation-funded nonprofit news sites. “It’s a Catch-22,” he says. “The foundations are asking nonprofit media to be [financially] sustainable and to have impact. Those two things don’t go together easily.”
How do we measure long-term impact in an era of sensationalism and fake news?
September 6 2017
MediaShift’s Tim Cigelske reflects on nearly two years of examining media impact measurement, acknowledging both the “dark side” of sensational metrics as well as each individual’s “power to create, curate and shape our media.”
While investigative journalists are divided on the specifics of impact strategy, they agree that they have been “placing a greater emphasis in recent years on less tangible markers like raising awareness and sparking widespread conversation.” Some also say that incorporating potential outcomes from the beginning of a project can cross the line from investigative reporting to activism.
There is no single “correct” strategy for leveraging digital media into movement power. There is, however, a set of practices that, when properly instituted, helps activist organizations adapt to the rhythms of the digital age. “Different media, dominant at different points in history, incentivize different forms of public spectacle,” writes David Karpf, associate professor of media and public affairs and George Washington University.
Here’s what happened the last time audio producers got better data
July 7 2017
This fall, Apple will release detailed analytic data revealing how long listeners tune in to specific podcasts, ad whether or not they skip over advertisements. What will this mean for the future of podcasting? There are some lessons to be learned from previous changes in data collection methods.
With its Take Action newsletter, The Nation is giving readers ways to act on the stories they read
July 7 2017
Left-leaning magazine The Nation has developed a “Take Action Now” newsletter to link reporting to political action. While the magazine already had a “Take Action” program in place designed directing readers to sign petitions and write letters to Congress, the newsletter provides a range of direct actions with varying time commitments.
How battling brands online has gained urgency, and impact
June 21 2017
Social change media makers may find fighting corporate brands online to be an effective piece of their impact strategies: “Posting a hashtag — #deleteUber, for instance, or #grabyourwallet — and threatening to back it up by withholding dollars can bring about a much quicker, more visible change in the world than, say, calling your representative.”
A superhero power for our time: How to handle the truth
June 20 2017
How can social change makers increase the likelihood that their messages will be received? This article describes how when people feel a claim is familiar and fits existing narratives, they will evaluate claims based on intuitive processes (“gut feelings”) rather than analytical ones. Therefore, “simply telling people they are wrong is unlikely to change many minds, but making the flow of false claims a bit more bumpy can push people into analytic evaluations rather than intuitive ones.”
The Swedish startup Kit is rethinking analytics for a broader view of what makes a story successful
June 8 2017
Threats are real, but benchmarks point to healthy public radio system
June 6 2017
“Renewed confidence in the future of public radio is showing up all across the country,” writes Mark Fuerst, director of the Public Media Futures Forum, created by the Wyncote Foundation. While public radio trends look positive, there are still persistent challenges, including the need for a redesigned editorial network, improvement in digital services, and narrowing the gap between large, high-performing stations and smaller stations lacking in resources.
The scariest chart in Mary Meeker’s slide deck for newspapers has gotten even a smidge scarier
May 31 2017
Following trends from previous years, “the decline in newspaper print advertising accelerated last year in a big way.” Meanwhile, while mobile news consumption continues to rise. In fact, mobile is eating the world, and most news organizations make only a pittance off it.