Jan Kahánek, Unsplash

We’re funded! Now what?

10/10 journalists backed, so when’s the big launch?

After a full month of crowdfunding, the countdown on our launch campaign ended at midnight on Wednesday the 24th of May. After sitting at a tantalising “9/10 journalists funded” for a few days, one final push saw us safely over the finish line.

Our heartfelt thanks go to every single person who donated, tweeted, Facebooked, emailed, or just thought “this looks interesting.” Every contribution–tiny or huge–added up to a ringing endorsement of what we’re trying to do.

So, what’s next?

Well, despite lots of confused comments, the end of the crowdfunding campaign doesn’t mean an instantaneous launch. It means we’ve got enough support to start making the project happen, which involves hiring for, designing and building WikiTribune from scratch.

If you think of a typical Kickstarter, the funding reaches its target and the gadget goes into production, usually for delivery later in the year. That’s exactly what we’ll be doing — the fact that it’s a digital product rather than, say, a fancy new fidget spinner sadly doesn’t mean it’s any quicker to build!

We want to get this right. So we’ll be taking our time hiring the right journalists and editors, testing and refining our processes, designing and building the site (we’re basing the platform on Wordpress, which makes life a little easier, but it’s not the kind of project there’s a simple plugin for!) so we can deliver something that meets and exceeds your expectations.

When’s the launch, then?

We don’t have an exact date, but we’re aiming to be up and running — that means producing content — by Autumn this year. We’ll do it faster if we can, but only if we can do it right.

In the meantime, we’ll be updating the blog with progress reports, more interviews and details from the factory floor of WikiTribune. We enormously appreciate your patience and support, and can’t wait to show you what we’re turning it into.

Thanks again for helping us hit our target. Your belief in evidence-based news is exactly what the world needs right now.