News Deeply: Why We’re Pausing Work on Some of Our Platforms

News Deeply
Sep 4, 2018 · 3 min read
Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

It’s my duty to share some sad news from News Deeply. As of this month, we’re pausing publication on a number of our platforms. Oceans Deeply, Malnutrition Deeply and Peacebuilding Deeply will “sunset,” ceasing their on-site journalism. For now, our financial support for the platforms has come to a close, but we will be ready to relaunch them or shape them into a new form when circumstances allow. We continue to engage with supporting partners who care about investing in quality journalism for our troubled times.

Refugees Deeply, Water Deeply and Women’s Advancement Deeply remain live, while our adjoining projects team continues to execute on creative partnerships.

Although our publishing model allows for us to pop up and fold down thematic platforms, it’s always sad for us to see any one of them go dark. Ebola Deeply’s run lasted as long as the 2014–2015 outbreak. Arctic Deeply was launched around the U.S. tour as chair of the Arctic Council. One of our strengths is the flexibility to launch a home for the story and the communities that care about it — with the dedication and integrity to produce the best coverage. When the story takes a new turn or we’re past our mandate to cover it, it’s time to fold the platform.

In the current circumstances, it also forces us to let some of our colleagues go. Saying goodbye to those teammates, both reporters and core staffers, is the hardest part of my job. The digital designers, developers and innovators who’ve passed through our doors have made our work the powerful force that it is. The journalists who write and oversee our coverage do phenomenal work — often the only focused reporting of some of the most vital issues of our time. On stories from deep-sea mining to sustainable food systems to conflict resolution, they have produced excellent reporting for the global public good. All of our journalists have my lifelong respect, admiration and gratitude for the work they’ve done with us.

We believe that the Deeply model can work as a way to sustain specialized, top-quality reporting. We’ve seen that there is a market for the topical expertise, expert networks and convening opportunities that come from building distinctive single-subject news sites. We’ve built reader communities of professionals and decision-makers who have formed a deep relationship with our platform. We have consistently met their high standards with our rigorous reporting and analysis. They, in turn, have provided insights and op-eds that enrich the information on our sites. It’s an engine for informed conversation — producing the opposite of fake news.

But we’ve learned that we need to tweak our approach to building ongoing support for each platform. In the coming season, we’ll adapt based on that experience, leverage the assets and know-how we’ve developed, leaning into what’s worked best. Events and membership benefits will be a focal part of that strategy. We’ll also look into launching platforms on global issues and megatrends that have shown great promise for the single-subject approach. As always, we will dedicate each day to advancing the principles and practices behind News Deeply, figuring out new ways to cover current events that are so consequential they will shape our societies for generations to come.

We didn’t give ourselves an easy assignment. Building new media models requires continuous R&D, a journey of extraordinary hard work and making adjustments along the way. Our work at News Deeply embodies all of that. For six years it’s been our bold answer to the challenges facing the media industry. We’ll continue working to perfect the Deeply model, in the service of our readers and the wider world.

Lara Setrakian
CEO and Executive Editor
News Deeply

News Deeply

Written by

We build single-subject information hubs, connecting experts and key decision makers in interactive community platforms.

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