Want to save local news? We do too.

Aron Pilhofer
Oct 9 · 2 min read

For struggling local news organizations, digital transformation has become something closer to digital survival.

That’s why we launched News Catalyst. Simply put, our mission is to help local news enterprises transform themselves into sustainable digital businesses. And we are hiring two key roles on our team to help us get there: a Deputy Director of Product and a Developer.

News Catalyst will be capable of providing support in those areas that news organizations have traditionally underinvested: data, digital storytelling, mobile, analytics, engagement, social media, product development, etc.

Where there are gaps in news organizations’ ambitions and/or resources, News Catalyst will fill them by providing tools, technology, training, hands-on support and expertise. Through these interventions, we will see real and lasting change in the way local news enterprises operate.

We will work with the growing cohort of local news organizations that have graduated from Table Stakes. The program has been instrumental in helping news leaders learn to develop and execute on strategies for digital transformation. News Catalyst will build on that momentum by assisting and amplifying the impact those news leaders can have within their organizations.

We will also develop a single sign-on platform for newsroom tools called PressPass that we offer to the entire journalism industry. We envision PressPass as a marketplace for best-in-class tools proven to aid digital transformation, providing easy access and lower costs for news organizations. PressPass will also afford developers an easy-to-use user authentication system, which makes standing up new tools for journalism easier than ever.

If we succeed, we will see local news organizations better able to compete in the digital ecosystem: to develop new products and improve existing ones; to identify and engage audiences; and to nimbly respond to challenges and opportunities.

Is that an absurdly ambitious mission? You bet it is. We know we aren’t going to save journalism — but that isn’t going to stop us from trying.

If this sounds like a mission you can get behind, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line at jobs@newscatalyst.org.

Aron Pilhofer

Written by

James B. Steele Chair in Journalism Innovation at @TUKleincollege. Proud @Guardian and @nytimes alum. Co-founder of @documentcloud & @HacksHackers. Yachtsman.

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