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Equity first: A call to action for journalism and journalism funders

In late September, the LA Times editorial board wrote, “For at least its first 80 years, the Los Angeles Times was an institution deeply rooted in white supremacy.” This editorial was the start of an eight-part series interrogating the Times’ history of racist coverage and its failure to represent the communities it purported to serve […]

Supporting environmental and public health journalism is critical to disaster preparedness

Philanthropy is in the business of preventing and alleviating disasters. And plenty of those need addressing right now. A global pandemic has killed more than 120,000 Americans. The accelerating climate crisis resulted in the hottest May in history and an early start to what promises to be a catastrophic hurricane season. Then, this spring, these […]

2020 Media Impact Forum speakers commemorate Juneteenth with stories of triumph, pain

Media Impact Funders was closed on Friday in celebration of Juneteenth. But our friends in the media were quite busy, exploring sometimes painful history and tragic current events, but also revealing uplifting personal stories of triumph over adversity. In the first installment of our Media Impact Forum, Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman interviewed Dr. Ayana […]

Lessons from our nation’s founding particularly relevant amid COVID-19

Sometimes, at Media Impact Funders, we find that we are slightly ahead of our time. Looking back on our programs for the Media Impact Forum in 2018, we are struck by how much of what we heard then resonates clearly in this peculiar moment we find ourselves in.

Radio Active Culture rings even more true in quarantine

As we come to the end of a brutal month for our country and for people around the world trying to defeat the spread of COVID-19, we have all had to devise ways to work and learn and entertain ourselves from the confines of our homes. And for many, that has elevated the importance of […]

In the Covid-19 crisis, philanthropy’s investment in local news pays off

As philanthropy looks to triage the limited resources available to address the burgeoning impact of the spread of Covid-19, let’s also see where philanthropy is already paying dividends.

How films and philanthropy can bring about social change

Filmmakers Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar (right) won an Oscar for “American Factory,” one of the first movies from Higher Ground, the production company founded by former President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama.

A master class for philanthropy in listening

Throughout America today, headlines reveal political division, racial animus, and horrific episodes of gun violence sparked by xenophobic ideology. In mass media and through direct expression in social media dominated by angry political invective, it seems that America has never been more divided.

Nonprofit media and exposing injustice: How philanthropy can help

From time to time, events at the highest levels of legal and political decision-making in Washington shed light on the importance of nonprofit media and the critical role of philanthropy in the support of journalism. Last week, the United States Supreme Court overturned the conviction of Curtis Flowers for the brutal murder of four people […]

Podcasting for all

Podcasting is on the rise. Over 700,000 podcasts are available in iTunes with an estimated 90 million monthly listeners globally. No single entity controls podcasts, which means they are an accessible, decentralized, and democratized way to create content. Today, on-demand audio has dramatically transformed the way important stories and unheard voices reach us.

Listen up, grantmakers: Radio is a hot way to advance knowledge and culture

With the sharp rise of social media and the rapid collapse of so many daily newspapers in recent years, it would be easy to assume that radio is another traditional media format in decline. As more and more young listeners turn to music streaming services like Spotify and Pandora, predictions of broadcast radio’s imminent demise […]

As press freedom declines, philanthropy must address the safety, security of journalists around the world

Media philanthropy is a growing force on the global stage, with foundation support increasing significantly in recent years, more than doubling from $915 million in 2009 to $1.9 billion in 2015, the last year for which complete figures were available. Altogether, media grants amounted to about $9.9 billion in that span, according to a new […]