El País: how to keep a focus on quality journalism in tough times

2012 was a difficult year for El País, which cut a third of its newsroom staff due to financial pressures. For some weeks at the end of the year, journalists were counting to 129 before the evening editorial meeting each day, to remind editors of the 129 colleagues who had to leave.

Google set to charge subscriptions for special YouTube channels

Since January this year, the media industry’s rumour mill has been aflutter with suggestions of the impending possibility of paid-for subscriptions for certain YouTube channels.

Press aid in France: online press to pay same low taxes as printed press

The reduced level of VAT that currently benefits the printed press in France thanks to a government aid program is due to be extended to the nation’s digital media publications as well, following demands from Spiil (Syndicat de la presse indépendante d’information en ligne).

The Free Press Principle

3 May is a day to celebrate hard-won press freedoms, but also to recognise how fragile those victories remain.

Twitter on the hunt for ‘Head of News and Journalism’

It would appear that Twitter is looking to solidify its relationship with the news media following a new job advertisement posted online for a ‘Head of News and Journalism’, hereby announcing their search for somebody to “shape and drive the next growth phase of Twitter’s partnership with the news industry.”

Citizen journalism platform Groundviews thrives in Sri Lanka

In 2006, journalist Sanjana Hattotuwa created Groundviews.org, an influential website based in Sri Lanka intended as a “safe space for debate and discussion” during and after Sri Lanka’s long civil war, where people could write freely about news and events that interested them.

‘Voices in Danger’: Jim Armitage speaks about the Independent’s latest project

Launched yesterday, Monday 29 April, the Independent’s new press freedom project, ‘Voices in Danger’ will endeavour to “give prominence to the plight of journalists being harassed, attacked or pressurised” according to its pioneer, owner of the Independent titles, Evgeny Lebedev. The announcement of this humanitiarian campaign is timely, given that it falls in the same week as World Press Freedom Day (Friday 3 May).

Being right is more important than being first

The news media’s less-than-perfect coverage of the recent Boston bombings and subsequent hunt for suspects has reignited debates about how sure you have to be before publishing anything, whether through your own platform or through a social network. This issue arose during several discussions at the International Journalism Festival in Perugia in the last few days, and panelists overwhelmingly agreed that being right is far more important than being first, and this should be reflected on social media.

South Africa Secrecy Bill – ‘this fight is not over’

The ability of South African journalists to expose corruption and other criminal activities in their nation is under considerable threat following the passing of the Protection of State Information Bill last Thursday (25 April).

Emily Bell on newsroom organisation in a post-industrial journalistic age

News journalism just isn’t an industry any more, said Emily Bell, director of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia Journalism School, and co-author of the report Post-industrial journalism: adapting to the present. Newsrooms all used to look the same but they are changing fast. The rows of desks with hundreds of people are going, but what will they be replaced by?