WordPress.com is partnering with Google and news industry leaders on a new platform for small- and medium-sized publishers, called Newspack. The team has raised $2.4 million in first-year funding from the Google News Initiative, Lenfest Journalism Institute, Civil funder ConsenSys, and the Knight Foundation, among others. We’re also still happy to talk to and engage other funders who want to get involved — I’d love to put even more resources into this.

It’s been a difficult climate for the news business, particularly at the local level. It also breaks my heart how much of their limited resources these organizations still sink into closed-source or dead-end technology. Open source is clearly the future, and if we do this right Newspack can be the technology choice that lasts with them through the decades, and hopefully our 15 years of growth lends some credibility to our orientation to build things for the long term.

Here’s Kinsey in Nieman Lab:

The goal is to both make sure that the catalog of publishing tools as well as business tools they need to be able to run what one hopes is a sustainable news operation are addressed simultaneously. It’s not simply a CMS for a newsroom, but a full business system that enables publishing and monetization at the same time.

Nieman Lab interview

As you have come to expect from Automattic, everything will be open source and developed to the same standards WordPress itself is. We’re working with Spirited Media and the News Revenue Hub on the platform, and we will likely look for even more partnership opportunities from across the WordPress ecosystem. If you’d like to invest or get involved, drop us a line at newspack@automattic.com.

4 replies on “Journalism and Newspack”

  1. Tried to send this to you on your Birthday, Matt: Of the 13 candidates running for mayor in next month’s Chicago election, 11 have websites. Of those 11, nine are using WordPress. That amounts to 81.81818181818182%, a very cool number! Cheers!!!

  2. GDPR was a big concern for WordPress last year.
    Using this wonderful tool, we are in contact with wordpress.org several times a day :
    * browsing wordpress.org websites
    * checking for new wordpress, themes, plugins updates
    * under admin, ajax calls like “heartbeat” with its “has_focus” parameter
    * loading things from s.w.org
    and certainly much more.
    So my question is this, does wordpress.org have a dpo (data protection officer) ?

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