If you are hungry for news you can
trust, journalism that helps you make decisions about your
community, reporting that holds power to account, then this is for
you. This is my personal advice for people who want to support
journalism that matters. It is just a starting point, it is not
comprehensive, and it’ll become stronger and more useful if you add
your ideas to it. Use the comments to add your list of newsrooms you
subscribe to and support.
more than ever, it is important to our democracy that we seek out
and support good journalism.
Every person is going to construct their media diet differently, so
any list I create will be incomplete. My goal here is to provide a
framework for you to find the news that will challenge, inspire,
inform and engage you.
Since writing this piece I helped launch a new giving platform to
help find and support trustworthy local and investigative news — check
A few key pieces of advice:
Support local news:
Subscribe to your local newspapers, donate to a nonprofit newsrooms,
become a member at your public broadcasting stations and support the
local businesses that advertise on community news sites.
Build a relationship with your local journalists,
give them feedback, tell them what you’d like to see covered, share
Support a mix of media:
Construct a diverse media diet with a good mix of indie and
alternative news, local, national and international coverage, niche
and countervailing points of view.
outside your bubble.
Support journalism about the causes you care about:
If you care about climate change, support environmental journalism.
If you care about kids and schools, support a newsrooms focused on
education. If you care about hunger and homelessness, support
reporting about poverty, etc… (more on that below)
Finally, where ever you land on the
web look for the about section, see if they post a code of ethics,
figure out who the staff are. Here is
a great guide to spotting fake and untrustworthy news.
The advice below focuses mostly on
nonprofit newsrooms, but there are many commercial newsrooms who do
important work and deserve your support as well. Give them your
attention, subscribe, and engage with them too.
If you want to support local local news start here. I can’t list
every local newsrooms deserving of your attention and your support,
but there are a number of great directories where you can find links
to trustworthy journalism in your area:
Find nonprofit newsrooms near you
via the Institute for Nonprofit News
membership directory and
Find your local public media,
PBS stations, and
Search for members of the
Local Independent Online News Publishers near you.
Find journalists committed to
solutions oriented reporting, with the
Solutions Journalism Network’s Storytracker.
Find community newspapers near you
Association of Alternative Newsmedia’s member directory.
Find local ethnic media outlets with
New America Media’s directory
Go to different neighborhoods to
hyperlocal papers that are cropping back up.
are other great newsrooms who aren’t in any of these directories.
Can’t find a local newsroom near you? Tweet to me
and I’ll help you track down a great local newsrooms near you.)
NICHE AND TOPIC FOCUSED REPORTING:
If you care about a specific cause, there is likely a reporting
project focused on that issue. Below are a few examples organized
into imperfect categories, but check out the
Institute for Nonprofit News and
The Media Consortium for longer lists of newsrooms covering
these topics. (Add
more suggestions in the comments too!)
Center for Investigative Reporting / Reveal,
Center for Public Integrity,
The Nation Institute,
Investigative Reporters and Editors,
Ida B. Wells Society
Philly Public School Notebook,
Chronicle of Higher Education,
Southern Education Desk,
Inside Higher Ed
The Crime Report,
Juvenile Justice Information Exchange,
Race and Social Justice:
The Chicago Reporter,
Vision Maker Media,
National Native News,
Health and Healthcare:
Kaiser Health News,
Clear Health Costs,
Food and Environment:
Inside Climate News,
Food and Environmental Reporting Network,
Harvest Public Media
PRI’s The World,
International Consortium of Investigative Journalists,
Global Investigative Journalism Network
As the news landscape has shifted fewer and fewer newsroom and
journalists have regular access to legal support and protection.
This come at a time when we have unprecedented legal, technological
and cultural threats to freedom of the press. Support these
organizations who are on the front lines of defending the rights of
journalists and all of us.
Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press — Provide legal
support for journalists in the US and advocate for press freedom
Freedom of the Press Foundation — Dedicated to helping support
and defend public-interest journalism focused on exposing
mismanagement, corruption, and law-breaking in government.
Free Press — Free Press fights for your rights to connect and
Student Press Law Center and
Foundation for Individual Rights (FIRE) — Defend high school and
National Press Photographers Association — Focused on supporting
photographers’ rights and all people’s right to record.
Pen American — A more literary emphasis on freedom of expression.
First Amendment Coalition and
National Freedom of Information Act Coalition — Dedicated to
advancing free speech, more open and accountable government.
Groups that report on press freedom
Columbia Journalism Review,
On The Media,
Nieman Journalism Lab
notable are the
Committee to Protect Journalists
Reporters Without Borders,
though their work is focused more internationally. There are other
important rights organizations and government transparency groups
whose work intersects with press freedom as well.)
New Infrastructure for News
As with the press freedom groups
listed above, there is increasingly a need to support the
organizations that support journalists. We have to help create a new
infrastructure for independent media. These organizations help train
journalists, offer fellowships, fund research and support small
independent newsrooms in other ways.
A few of these groups include
Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma,
National Association of Black Journalists,
National Association of Hispanic Journalists,
Asian American Journalists Association,
Native American Journalists Association,
National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association,
Journalism and Women Symposium,
Women’s Media Center,
Association for Independents in Radio,
Online News Association and others mentioned throughout this
post and beyond.)
Today, creating the journalism we want, demands that we help support
and defend the media we need.
These places need your support. Your
donations will go a long way at all of these newsrooms and
organizations. But you can support these places in other ways
besides your money. Giving your time, your expertise, or your
connections can all help small independent newsrooms. Share their
work with a friend or family member via email, social media, or in
person. Subscribe to their podcasts, email newsletters, social media
accounts. Participate by attending local events, meetings that they
are hosting, call-in to talk shows, share feedback when it’s asked
Be engaged with the journalism you
care about, participate in the news that matters to you, and give
what you can to support it.
contributing ideas, suggestions and feedback
Jessica Clark, Mandy Van