about  /   archives  /   contact  /   subscribe  /   twitter    
Share this entry
Make this entry better

What are we missing? Is there a key link we skipped, or a part of the story we got wrong?

Let us know — we’re counting on you to help Encyclo get better.

Put Encyclo on your site
Embed this Encyclo entry in your blog or webpage by copying this code into your HTML:

Key links:
Primary website:
texastribune.org
Primary Twitter:
@texastribune

The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit online news organization based in Austin, Texas, that focuses on political and civic issues.

The site was founded in 2009 by venture capitalist John Thornton and former Texas Monthly editor Evan Smith. Thornton raised $4 million in startup funds for the site, including $1 million of his own money and $750,000 in grants from the Knight Foundation and Houston Endowment.

The Tribune is also supported by about 3,000 donating members, as well as corporate sponsors and dozens of both free and paid public events, on which it was on track to make $1.2 million in 2013. The site started with 16 staff members, including 11 journalists (it had grown to a staff of 50 and 18 full-time reporters by 2014), and a $1.6 million budget. The Tribune was profitable for the first time in 2012. By 2011, the site had raised $3.7 million and spent $4 million. It had raised about $11.8 million in total by early 2012, with a budget of $4.2 million.

In March 2011 the Tribune and The Bay Citizen were awarded a $975,000 grant from the Knight Foundation to develop an open source content management system specifically for news organizations. It received another $1.5 million grant from Knight in 2013 to refine its business model. All told, the Tribune had raised almost $11 million through January 2012. It projected $4.5 million in revenue for that year and was profitable. As of 2014, just more than half of its revenue came from corporate sponsorships and live events, with another 17% from individual donations, 17% from foundations, and 12% from memberships.

The Tribune also owns Texas Weekly, a small weekly online political newsletter founded in 1984. The newsletter brings in revenue to cover about 15 percent of the Tribune’s expenses, and Thornton has mentioned plans to launch similar specialty publications.

The Tribune publishes its stories primarily on its website, though they are also available free to other Texas news outlets.

The Tribune has been involved heavily in social media and data journalism, initiatives for which it earned praise at its launch. In May 2010, Smith reported that the Tribune’s databases were responsible for more than a third of its 5.3 million page views after six months. For 2012 the site reported 5.7 million unique visitors and 40 million page views.

About the Tribune

)

Interview with former reporter Elise Hu:

)

Recent Nieman Lab coverage:
April 15, 2014 / Jake Batsell
Paying for news by filling a need: Lessons from Austin’s Digital News Revenue Summit — Reprogramming your thermostat every time the seasons change can be a maddening exercise. But that humdrum annoyance created a market opportunity for Nest Labs, whose $249 self-programming thermostat allows users to more ...
Feb. 13, 2014 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of measuring the real impact of news — Hello there! It’s me, your friendly neighborhood Tweet Button. What if you could tap me and unlock a brand new source of funding for startup news sources of all kinds? What if, even better, you the reader could tap...
Jan. 13, 2014 / Caroline O'Donovan
Start small, plan big: How two nonprofit education sites came together to build a network — What started out as two independent nonprofit news sites is now a network of four — with aims to grow larger. Chalkbeat, the nonprofit education reporting partnership that grew out of GothamSchools in New York City and...
Dec. 19, 2013 / Martin Langeveld
Understanding the billionaire media gambles — Our journalism business never ceases to provide surprises and fodder for speculation — that’s what makes this year-end round of prediction posts so much fun and, often, so far off base. For example, none of the L...
Nov. 4, 2013 / Justin Ellis
The Texas Tribune is getting into sponsored content for a new online opinion section — The Texas Tribune will begin experimenting with sponsored content in 2014 with a site dedicated to both standard and paid opinion pieces. TribTalk will be the Austin-based news nonprofit’s answer to both the newspa...

Recently around the web, from Mediagazer:

Primary author: Mark Coddington. Main text last updated: March 13, 2014.
Make this entry better
How could this entry improve? What's missing, unclear, or wrong?
Name (optional)
Email (optional)
Detroit Free Press and Detroit News logo

The Detroit Free Press and Detroit News are Michigan’s largest newspapers. Under a 1987 joint operating agreement, the Detroit Media Partnership publishes, distributes, and sells advertising for both papers. The papers are owned separately and employ independent news staffs and websites. The two papers were not making money as of late 2009, though executives were…

Put Encyclo on your site
Embed this Encyclo entry in your blog or webpage by copying this code into your HTML:

Encyclo is made possible by a grant from the Knight Foundation.
The Nieman Journalism Lab is a collaborative attempt to figure out how quality journalism can survive and thrive in the Internet age.
Some rights reserved. Copyright information »