How Do We Make Money?

Session Host: Elwin Green
Reporter: Carmen Lee
Participants: C. Denise Johnson, Jeff Hermes, Jordan Green, Seunghyun Lee, Byong Lee

How Can We Make Money?

I. Money-generating models
A. Syndicated model
1. Operation funded by foundation grants
2. Stories sold to outlets
3. Examples: New England Center for Investigative Reporting
Rocky Mountain Investigative Center
ProPublica (?)
B. Advertising model
1. Advertising-supported information product based on number of clicks
2. Large numbers needed to generate decent amount of money
3. Examples: YouTube, Blogher, GoogleAdSense
C. Fundraising/Sponsorship model
1. News enterprise supported by contributions from foundations, corporations and others
2. Examples: Oakland Local, Common Language Project (Seattle) public radio and television
D. Crowd-sourced model
1. Writers propose ideas to others and get micro-donations to support doing a story
2. Example: SpotDot.US
E. Book-development model
1. Writers write articles with the intent of developing a book from them.
2. Writers make deals with employers or former employers (newspapers, magazines, other publications) to get the publications rights to stories the writers produced while employees so that the articles can be compiled into a book
F. Co-op model
1. Audience owns the publication, supports its production, and provides editorial guidance to writers (story ideas, feedback).
2. Examples: Banyan Project, Locally Grown News (Michelle Ferrierr)
G. Other possibilities
1. App model – creation of an app that could be sold to support operating costs
2. Ancillary products – hats, DVDs, posters, etc. with enterprise’s logo sold to help support it

II. Possible processes for developing above models
A. A writer’s “path” – freelancing to grant funding to sponsorships to advertising
B. Collaborations with other writers – networking, pool resources, co-locating (writers incubator)s