RJI links 9/18/18

News and commentary of interest to journalism innovators and entrepreneurs. Read the latest from the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute.

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Observer launches Sports Pass, for digital access to extensive coverage of Carolinas 9/11/18

The Charlotte Observer has launched Sports Pass, a sports-only digital subscription for everyone who wants to stay engaged and up-to-date on every major sports team – not just in Charlotte, but throughout the Carolinas.

For $30 a year, Sports Pass is your golden ticket to unlimited digital access to every single sports story the Observer publishes on CharlotteObserver.com.

That includes access to most sports stories published by the other six McClatchy newspapers throughout the Carolinas.

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A decade in, the Texas Tribune pursues the rest of its audience 9/10/18

About a month before the Texas Tribune launched in 2009, media reporter Jack Shafer wrote a piece for Slate delineating the numerous problems inherent in nonprofit journalism – namely, that nonprofits lose money on purpose, and thus, have to take handouts, which, Shafer says, "come with conditions." Shafer, who then blithely referred to CEO Evan Smith as "picking the pocket" of venture capitalist John Thornton, also spelled out that audience development is always secondary to advocacy in this sort of business model:

"Commercial outlets may reflect their owners' views, but this tendency is always tempered by the need to attract readers and viewers. Nonprofit outlets almost always measure their success in terms of influence, not audience, because their customers are the donors who've donated cash to influence politics, promote justice, or otherwise build a better world."

Of course, the Texas Tribune's base, composed of members scattered across the state and beyond, also includes deep-pocketed professional philanthropists. But just as the Tribune has evolved from a niche publication for hardcore policy wonks to a mainstream, establishment publication, its lofty goals for influence and audience aren't at odds with each other; they're inextricably linked.

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McClatchy introduces new series to connect with readers on policy solutions 9/10/18

Coming out of the 2016 presidential election year, covering politics in the media has often times gone through chaos and disorder. It's what prompted McClatchy to launch the Influencer series in four of its major markets: California, Florida, Missouri and the Carolinas.

Kristin Roberts, regional editor of the McClatchy's East region, is in charge of leading the series in all four markets. As regional editor, she discovered that having reporters just cover polls during the elections was a bad decision and it didn't help readers.

"We didn't satisfy the consumer's desire to understand policies affecting their communities and where candidates stood on those policies," she said. "Readers want us to force conversation about policy, not personality."

Now, she considers the Influencer series the start of changing the way newsrooms should approach covering politics.

And it all starts with the reader.

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People care about getting printed paper 9/10/18

Anyone thinking people don't care about the printed newspaper these days should talk with T&D Circulation Director Barbara West-Ravenell.

When mechanical problems delayed the The Times and Democrat's press run on Sunday night (Sept. 2) and into the day on Monday, the result was subscribers not receiving their newspaper on schedule on Labor Day morning. Never mind that it was a holiday -- or maybe in part because of it -- people were not happy. They expect the newspaper to be there and be there on schedule.

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Newsletter engagement strategies to grow community and readership 9/4/18

Email newsletters have long been an essential distribution channel for publishers, but new engagement strategies are evolving to help publishers stand out in a crowded inbox and build an enthusiastic readership.

The Wall Street Journal's Head of Product for Newsletters Annemarie Dooling led a discussion among news audience engagement and product professionals from a dozen publications about the ways in which publishers are keeping readers engaged after they've left the inbox.

The tactics the conversation surfaced for encouraging engagement through the inbox are diverse, and depend on reshaping the newsletter from a one-to-many medium into a one-to-one conversation. By redefining success through meaningful interactions with readers, newsletter editors are building stronger communities of engaged audiences that support the business models powering journalism.

The discussion was convened on August 14 by Tow-Knight Center at CUNY's Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism for members of its news Audience and Product communities of practice, which bring together journalists working to develop bigger, more engaged audiences and compelling products for a variety of global, national, and innovative niche publishers.

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Mike Strain: How did I 'know' Kevin Stitt was going to win? I got it from a good source. 9/4/18

Here's why Randy Krehbiel, one of the government reporters at the Tulsa World is so valuable — to the Tulsa World and its readers.

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Singapore Press Holdings chooses Lineup Systems for digital ad sales management 8/28/18

Lineup Systems has announced that Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the leading media organization in Asia, will implement Adpoint's end-to-end advertising management solution across the company's digital sales operations to improve commercial opportunity and introduce advertising best practices.

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Publishing house introduces editorial system Content-X to its ad department 8/28/18

In the future, the ad department at the Nürnberger Presse publishing house will produce all its advertising inserts, advertorial pages and supplements with the editorial system Content-X by ppi Media and Digital Collections.

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GateHouse offers voluntary severance packages to some Tribune employees 8/28/18

GateHouse Media offered Columbia (Mo.) Daily Tribune employees voluntary severance packages last Wednesday, Publisher Terri Leifeste said Thursday.

Leifeste said only those in production or sales were excluded. She emphasized that acceptance of the offers is voluntary.

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