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2019-01-29T16:39:49+00:00 January 29th, 2019|Newsroom|By WP Hosting Editor|

Automattic Announces Newspack – A New Platform for News Organizations

Aimed at small to medium-sized publishers and designed to help them develop sustainable revenue models.

As the most well-known (and successful) CMS system for internet publishing, WordPress’ mission is to “democratise publishiung” and supporting the free exchange of ideas. This viewpoint is especially true when it comes to journalists and various news organizations. While WordPress hosts sites for big news outlets like Time.com, CNN, and others, the company also hosts individually created sites from bloggers and reporters.

So, this week Automattic, Inc, the company behind WordPress, has decided to partner with other industry leaders in the world of journalism, such as Spirited Media, News Revenue Hub, and the Voice of San Diego to create an open-source platform, called Newspack, to help publishers achieve an “economically sustainable models for journalism, particularly at the local level.

Automattic, Inc. plans to fully fund the Newspack project through the development period that ends in January 2020. After that, fees of $1,000 or $2,000 per month will be applied to sites who are participating. Google and its Google News initiative plan to stake a claim in the project by committing $1.2 million. $400,000 will also be pledged by the Lenfest Institute for Journalism, $350,000 from Consensys, $250.000 from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and another $200,000 from an unnamed source slated for later this month.

Automattic is inviting small and medium-sized digital news organizations to apply to become charter participants in the development of the platform.

Before filling out the application digital news organizations should make sure they have fulfilled or can fulfill the list of 12 requirements. Here are some of the most important points.

  • News Organizations should be able to show both editorial and financial success in their local markets. If these organizations have sites that can be linked to other digital news outlets, or they have encountered technical challenges in starting out, they will also be given consideration
  • Applicants need to illustrate a clear editorial and development direction that has occurred on their sites
  • Even though the news organizations are to be strictly digital, those who focus on using audio and video won’t be able to participate in this phase
  • The news sites need to have a consistent record of creating news for their audience and a budget that supports at least 12 months of operation

For more information about the Newspack project, visit https://newspack.blog/.

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