If I could I would write about new and upcoming newsrooms every day of my life. There’s so much to learn from the ethos and mission of new outlets, from how they see the wider media landscape to where they’re placing their chips for revenue bets. Votebeat launched in 2020 as a three-month “pop-up” reporting project that placed 15 reporters in 10 local newsrooms – but is now going permanent with a very specific mission in mind.
Its editor-in-chief Chad Lorenz explains: “How do you produce journalism that strengthens elections? That’s the question that runs through my mind every day.” We’ve seen questions asked about the way US media failed to cover Trump and claims of voter fraud adequately – and how politics coverage has changed across the UK and Europe.
Votebeat appears to be taking a very different tack, albeit at a local level. Lorenz notes that the critical point of failure is a lack of resource – “a couple of major players that are [too] overstretched to cover the story” – so is partnering up with other outlets to help disseminate its reporting.
Vice has always been an interesting media business. But, despite interesting acquisitions and multimedia launches, it’s never really lived up to its potential. But could this change with an acquisition from Group Black?
On this week’s episode we hear from Lance Johnson, CEO of Recurrent Media. You might not have heard of them (yet), but you will have heard of some of their 25 brands – Donut, Domino, Saveur, Popular Science, and most recently, MEL magazine. He tells us about the group’s acquisition strategy, how they’re different from the usual VC companies we encounter, and what you need to do to get bought by Recurrent.
Rupert Murdoch’s lacklustre TV channel has apologised to Mind after claiming the charity funded legal fees of asylum seekers. It’s interesting in light of the total silence from Murdoch’s other property The Times over a disappearing article (which happens to be the main story of our latest episode).
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