Building the ecosystems for collaboration

“This is the year when we develop the infrastructure, protocols, and processes to support and facilitate effective collaboration where and when it’s needed, quickly and effectively initiated.”

As an industry reckoning with challenges on multiple fronts, 2018 is the year when news organizations leverage partnerships and collaboration with other news organizations — not to mention a wide range of partners like tech companies, nonprofits, community organizations, and academia — to address challenges.

As a toolset, collaboration is a flexible set of operations that newsrooms can adopt in order to more strategically use limited resources, reduce competitive waste, counter misinformation, ameliorate a lack of diversity, expand reach in audience and sources, connect with communities, cross lines of division, and cover news in community-centered rather than transactional ways.

This is the year when we develop the infrastructure, protocols, and processes to support and facilitate effective collaboration where and when it’s needed, quickly and effectively initiated.

Journalism has much to learn from other industries in this regard. In the same way that the CDC doesn’t wait for an emergency to have a system in place for coordinating area health centers, so too should journalism create protocols for covering large-scale stories, disasters, emergencies, shootings, and other significant events to best leverage the roles and expertise of different relevant news organizations best situated to cover the story.

The coming year will see more organization develop around projects in the vein of Documenting Hate and the Panama and Paradise Papers, where we collectively support and empower networks of local newsrooms to cover large, distributed stories effectively and comprehensively. We’ll leverage infrastructure to make spontaneous collaboration in the face of sudden news more efficient and calibrated. We’ll see more interconnectedness between local newsrooms and community partners, in the spirit of City Bureau, to best reach more cross-sections of communities and provide more nuanced and community-focused journalism.

Whether the scale is global or local, the infrastructure of collaboration, both human and technical, will be both a need and an opportunity. We need to create and foster the relationships that will ensure our newsrooms can address problems that need to be fixed and do the journalism that needs to be done.

This opportunity is our chance to rethink what it looks like to create news in a world where the traditional notions of competition no longer serve the best interests of journalism or our audiences.

We can do better and we can do it together.

Heather Bryant is the founder of Project Facet, an open source project to support editorial collaboration.

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Ariana Tobin   Too tired to tap

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David Skok   Finding an information-life balance

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Michelle Garcia   Navigating journalistic transparency

Eric Ulken   The year local publishers get smart(er) about change

Vivian Schiller   Pivot to tomorrow

Jessica Parker Gilbert   Design connects storytelling and strategy

Ståle Grut   Reclaiming audience interaction from social networks

Alice Antheaume   Are you fluent in AI?

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Kim Fox   Audience teams diversify their approach

Kawandeep Virdee   Zines had it right all along

Marie Gilot   No assholes allowed

Sam Sanders   Shine the light on ourselves

Emily Goligoski   Looking beyond news for inspiration

Edward Roussel   Eyes, ears, and brains

Tamar Charney   We get serious about algorithms

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Nikki Usher   The year of The Washington Post

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Luke O'Neil   The end is already here

Mary Walter-Brown   Show a little vulnerability

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Brian Lam   Sketchy ethics around product reviews

Cindy Royal   Your journalism curriculum is obsolete

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Dan Shanoff   You down with OTT? (Yeah, DTC)

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Sally Lehrman   Trust comes first

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Mary Meehan   Real lives are at stake in rural areas

Jennifer Coogan   The future is female

Sarah Marshall   Loyalty as the key performance indicator

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Hannah Cassius   The year of the echo-chamber escapists

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Rubina Madan Fillion   Unlocking the potential of AI

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Jacqui Cheng   Retailers move into content

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Charo Henríquez   Training is an investment, not an expense

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Alan Soon   The rise of start of psychographic, micro-targeted media

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Mike Caulfield   Refactoring media literacy for the networked age

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Jim Brady   With the people, not just of the people

Kyle Ellis   Let’s build our way out of this

José Zamora   Revenue-first journalism

Debra Adams Simmons   And a woman shall lead them

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Almar Latour   Conquering calm

Dheerja Kaur   Fun with subscription products

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Mi-Ai Parrish   Blockchain and trust

Heather Bryant   Building the ecosystems for collaboration

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Craig Newmark   Working together toward sustainable solutions

Caitria O'Neill   The new court of public opinion

Joanne McNeil   Gatekeeping the gatekeepers

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Julia B. Chan   Looking for loyalty in all the right places

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Ruth Palmer   Risks will grow for news subjects — especially minorities

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Mario García   Storytelling finally adapts to mobile

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Steve Grove   The midterms are an opportunity