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L'atelier des medias - RFI's Media Studio - Is Crowdfunding the Future of Journalism?

By: Leah Betancourt is the digital community manager at the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, Minn. She is @l3ahb3tan on Twitter (Twitter)....From

Crowdfunding, or getting many people to donate small amounts of cash to fund a project, startup, or service, is nothing new. Think public radio or television pledge drives. Think political campaigns. Think tip jar. Now, as the media landscape changes and traditional revenue sources are beginning to disappear, some forward-thinking journalists and entrepreneurs are starting to apply the crowdfunding concept to the news. A new crop of sites are combining crowdfunding with volunteer and professional contributions in order to source news that people want to read.

There are two issues with crowdfunded sites that also have volunteer journalists, however: who’s going to pay for it and who’s going to write it. These sites are experimenting with ways of answering these questions.

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Journalism in Crisis 09: 'Fifth estate' models could aid investigative journalism in the UK, says Paul Lashmar

 Posted: 19/05/09 By: Judith Townend -

Various options to address the current plight of investigative journalism are being discussed by the group of investigative journalists holding a series of private meetings in London, Paul Lashmar told the audience at the University of Westminster Journalism in Crisis event. Read more

Crowdfunding journalism

 By idio Ltd 12th May 2009

Everyone is weighing in on whats wrong with the publishing business model. Several potential solutions are being proposed, but all of them require a significant cutting of content-creation costs - especially investigative journalism. And yet everyone values the journalistic fact-checking and dirt-digging that keeps business leaders, organisations and government in check. Read More

Would You Pay A Journalist To Report The News You Want To Read?

 by Robin Wauters TechCrunch on May 12, 2009

I’m not asking if you would pay for press coverage as a business if it were possible, I’m asking you if you would ever do it as an individual, when you think there’s something that’s been underreported or even downright unreported to date and you want to see that situation changed. If you were looking for a story to be told that you consider to be missing from the news coverage already out there, would you be inclined to take out your wallet, and maybe even rally your friends, family and peers to do the same in order to be able to pay a reporter to do the fieldwork on your behalf? Read More