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Feb. 20, 2013, 2:44 p.m.

Press Publish 7: Michael Maness on Knight Foundation’s priorities and how to ensure impact

The head of Knight’s journalism initiatives talks about who it funds and how it tries to give its projects life beyond a grant’s expiration date.

michael-manessIt’s Episode 7 of Press Publish, the Nieman Lab podcast! My guest this week is Michael Maness, who leads the Journalism and Media Innovation program at the Knight Foundation.

If you pay much attention to the journalism innovation world — or if you’ve been reading this site for long — you know that Knight is the biggest of big dogs in the space. They give more than $30 million a year to a mixture of startups, news organizations, coding projects, and other ventures they believe will help support the information needs of communities. Name a prominent nonprofit news outlet or journalism school — or, increasingly, a news-related open source project — and there’s a pretty good shot Knight has either funded it or been asked to fund it. (That includes — disclosure! — this website, which has received Knight funding.) You could get a pretty good idea of the journalism-innovation zeitgeist just by looking at who Knight is funding at any given moment.

press-publish-logoMichael and I talked about how Knight decides on its journalism priorities, how those have shifted in recent years, and how they’re trying to ensure the projects they fund have impact beyond the length of a grant. If you’re interested in how journalism’s biggest foundation funder is thinking about the challenges in 2013, you should definitely give it a listen.


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Show notes

Michael Maness
Michael’s LinkedIn
Springfield News-Leader
Springfield (The Simpsons) — Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
About Knight Foundation
John S. Knight
James L. Knight
Knight Communities
Code for America
Knight Chairs in Journalism
Knight News Challenge
Nieman Lab coverage of the Knight News Challenge
Alberto Ibargüen
Previous winners of the News Challenge
2010: “Trust, mobile, and money: New focal points (and hints for applicants) for the new Knight News Challenge”
2011 FCC report: “The Information Needs of Communities: The changing media landscape in a broadband age”
Texas Tribune
Knight’s 2009 grant to the Texas Tribune
2009: “Gary Kebbel on the Knight News Challenge: Repetitive ideas, tougher judges hurt some applicants”
“Knight Foundation diversifies its journalism investments again with its new Prototype Fund”
“A new class of Knight News Challenge winners focuses on mobile in the developing world”
International Center for Journalists
“One wonders whether ‘News’ Challenge will always remain the appropriate name.”
Scott Lewis vs. Scott Klein
Knight’s 2007 $1.1 million grant for EveryBlock
Knight’s 2010 $235,000 grant for OpenBlock
Knight’s 2011 $275,000 grant for OpenBlock Rural
Mark Armstrong: “The death of EveryBlock and why I suddenly care about local”
“News Challenge on Open Gov: Submit now, not later”
Nieman Lab Book Club 2009: Jay Hamilton’s All the News That’s Fit to Sell: How the Market Transforms Information into News
Jay Hamilton, Duke University
Rachel Sterne Haot, chief digital officer, New York City
“A court case against those skeezy mugshot websites raises First Amendment issues”
“Journal News Gun Map Goes Out With A Bang: ‘We Do Not Cower’ To Bullies, Says Publisher”
Knight Media Learning Seminar 2013
“Beyond Lehrer: Some optimism in Miami around foundations helping fill community info needs”
Community Information Toolkit
2010: “Knight Foundation’s new biz consultant thinks news startups can learn from outside of journalism”
Peter Spear (@pspear)
POSTED     Feb. 20, 2013, 2:44 p.m.
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