Tax Day has come and gone (at least in the U.S.), and now it’s audit time.
Sustainability Audit time! 🥁
We’re thrilled to open applications for the 2023 Sustainability Audits and Funding program to 75 LION members.
The program will help LIONs assess their news businesses, prioritize steps toward stability and growth and leverage $6,000 in funding to act on tailored recommendations designed for their publication.
“The LION Sustainability Audit program is the most important tool we have used, by far, to help our newspaper reach sustainability,” said Emily Sachar, founder of the Red Hook Daily Catch. “Our auditor was extremely engaged and her report, filled with actionable and specific ideas, will drive our work for at least the next 3 years.”
Applications for the first round of selection are due by May 30. Apply today!
– Andrew Rockway, program manager, and the LION team
10 resources for independent publishers
LION’s membership in Canada has been growing – and now our support for Canadian publishers will be growing, too, thanks to a partnership with the Google News Initiative.
We’ve heard from these publishers that working in a media ecosystem with different rules and less philanthropic support than their U.S. counterparts makes the hard work of media entrepreneurship feel even harder.
Now here are 10 other resources and opportunities for independent publishers:
1. Earn a fellowship for early-career digital journalists. ONA’s MJ Bear Fellowship identifies and supports digital journalists under 30 whose work represents the best of digital news. (Deadline: TODAY)
2. Write a business plan and stick to it with help from this SCORE webinar during National Small Business Week. (May 2)
3. Make the most of LION membership. Join us for our Quarterly Member Meeting to learn about upcoming LION programs, recent industry insights, and new membership benefits while connecting with fellow members. (May 3)
4. Connect with local news publishers in the South. Join us next month for the The Deep South News Sustainability Meetup in Jackson, Mississippi. (May 18)
5. Set up a fact-checking system. LION member PublicSource will share how they’ve learned to make fact-checking a consistent (and efficient) part of their workflows as a lean newsroom. (May 22)
6. Apply for ONA’s Online Journalism Awards. Entries are now open for the 2023 Online Journalism Awards, which offer up to $32,000 in prize money. (Deadline: May 25)
7. Elevate your solutions journalism. Sign up for a free online course with the Solutions Journalism Network. (May 8 – June 4)
8. Build an audience engagement strategy for your newsletter. Join ONA for the third session in a series of online idea swaps for newsletter professionals. (July 18)
10. Contribute to research on news philanthropy. Media Impact Funders and The Lenfest Institute are collaborating on a new survey about philanthropy and journalism, and publishers can participate by emailing Jennifer Preston and requesting a survey link.
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What we’re reading
Newsletter platforms. Why publishers are choosing to publish their email newsletters on Linkedin. (Press Gazette)
Business thinking. Why Ben Smith wishes he’d focused more on the business model at Buzzfeed News. (Semafor)
Retention strategies. What publishers can learn from the subscription cancellation workflows at legacy newspapers – and what they should avoid. (The Lenfest Institute)
Micropayments. Why an old news revenue idea is getting another look, again. (Press Gazette)
Student journalism. How a college newspaper is thinking beyond its campus and becoming an important community news source. (Nieman Lab)
LION is hiring
If you are a passionate systems manager who delights in creative problem solving in pursuit of operational efficiencies, we want to talk with you about our Senior Manager of Technology role!
The Senior Manager of Technology will work closely with colleagues across the programming, finance and evaluation teams to help LION achieve its strategic goals focused on revenue generation, program engagement and measuring program outcomes.
LIONs in the news
Report for America announced its latest round of newsroom placements this week, and nearly a third of the program’s reporting fellows are going to LION member organizations and other digital-only newsrooms.
Congratulations to Dallas Free Press, El Tímpano, Enlace Latino NC, Fort Worth Report, Henrico Citizen, Houston Defender Network, InvestigateWest, Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service, Mississippi Free Press, New York Amsterdam News, New York Focus, Richland Source, Sahan Journal, The Land, The Texas Tribune, The Tributary, and VTDigger, as well as their newest reporters!
In other LION member news…
Fort Worth Report is hiring its first membership manager.
Open Vallejo is featured in the latest News @ Knight newsletter for its collaboration with ProJourn on police accountability reporting.
The Xylom founder Alex Ip appeared on WABE’s “Closer Look” radio show to discuss the newsroom’s environmental and criminal justice reporting.
How to reach us
When you reply to this email, we all receive it and you’ll hear back from one of us. You can also email us directly at [email protected].