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Listen up: New stories, new storytellers

“We will see equally resourced, meticulously researched and well-produced podcasts from minority storytellers who will offer deep reportage about their own communities.”

As humans we are drawn to stories. This year we were introduced to complex stories rich in character and subject matter diversity on one of the most adored and fastest-growing formats: podcasts. Arguably two of the year’s standouts (season three of Serial and season two of In the Dark) are in a league of their own because they interrogate the lived experience of underrepresented people and communities.

2019 is the year when we will see equally resourced, meticulously researched and well-produced podcasts from minority storytellers who will offer deep reportage about their own communities.

The need for stories from diverse voices is particularly important on platforms where audiences are growing. What this requires is a toolkit some untapped voices find as an insurmountable barrier to entry: Money, expertise, training and mentorship. While monthly podcast listenership continues to grow year-over-year, not all groups are part of the upward trend. An AudioBoom and YouGov study found that 60 percent of minority Americans are not listening to podcasts. More research is needed to reveal the underlying cause of the dearth of minority listeners, but when people don’t see themselves or their communities reflected, it is easy to disengage.

Spotify’s Soundup Bootcamps for Women of Color have provided resources for women of color, and Google and PRX are taking a step to support marginalized groups via its Podcasts Creator program. Communities who are underrepresented in the podcast landscape — particularly from the creator lens — have a voice and stories to tell. 2019 is the year we make sure those voices are heard.

LaToya Drake is a founding member of the News Lab at Google.

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Ole Reißmann   The rise of vertical storytelling

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Pablo Boczkowski   Reimagining the media for post-institutional times

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Jonas Kaiser   Catching up with “Neuland”

Elite Truong   What do we owe the next generation?

Kevin D. Grant   A year to embrace journalism as public service

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Mat Yurow   Content competition from the tech companies

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Jim Friedlich   Meet Citizen Kane 2.0

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Amy King   We should listen to the kids (especially on Instagram)

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Alberto Cairo   A year of uncertainty and confidence

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A.J. Bauer   The coming splintering of conservative media

Robert Hernandez   Racists and sexists get replaced

Kelsey Proud   Journalism becomes the escape

Manoush Zomorodi   Tech will do for information overload what it did for mindfulness

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Craig Newmark   The end of “loudspeakers for liars”

Ståle Grut   A new dawn for 3D tech in journalism

Sarah Alvarez   Simplify and redistribute

Dave Burdick   Seeing our blind spots

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Frank Chimero   Leave the phone at home and put news on your wrist

Robin Kwong   Tech shouldn’t be the only field pollinating “news nerds”

Rodney Gibbs   A bright — and young — year for audio

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An Xiao Mina   The death of consensus, not the death of truth

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Rachel Davis Mersey   Local news goes minimalist

Eric Ulken   The year you actually start to like your CMS

Kristen Muller   Local news fails — in a good way

Amy Schmitz Weiss   Local news isn’t where you thought it was

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Renan Borelli   Developing loyalty means developing your talent

Chase Davis   We can acknowledge what we don’t know

Nico Gendron   Reaching Generation Z beyond the coasts

Michael Grant   More newsrooms experiment their way to success

Jean Friedman Rudovsky   Cross-newsroom collaborations strengthen communities

Ernie Smith   The year we step back from the platform

Bill Grueskin   Toward a symphony model for local news

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Heather Bryant   We are responsible for how we use our power

Nicholas Jackson   More transparency around newsroom decisions

Stefanie Murray   Local news wakes up and starts collaborating

Taylor Lorenz   Personal branding is more powerful than ever

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Monique Judge   Committing to the truth, calling out lies

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Ariel Zirulnick   Participation gets professional

Mario García   The rise of content “pilots”

Jennifer Dargan   You don’t build diversity through one-off training sessions

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Heba Aly   The rise of international nonprofit news

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Alyssa Zeisler   We expand what (and how and who) we serve

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Julie Posetti   The year of the fight back

Victor Pickard   We will finally confront systemic market failure

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Steve Grove   A reckoning for tech’s work with news

Rubina Madan Fillion   Fighting the reality of deepfakes

Joe Amditis   Give the audience a seat at the table

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Jonathan Gill   Publishers build a common tech platform together

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Julia Rubin   Meeting people where they are

Kjerstin Thorson   Time to get mad about information inequality (again)

Matt Karolian   Publishers come to terms with being Facebook’s enablers

Mandy Velez   Putting the social back in social media

Zainab Khan   Publishers whose products can stand up to social media giants will win

Joel Konopo   Influencers become the new liberated power in Africa

Ben Smith   The pendulum starts to swing back

Bill Adair   Another year fighting Trump’s falsehoods

Kate Myers   Journalism continues to be bad for democracy

Cory Bergman   Journalism as a technology service

Jesse Holcomb   We’ll get better at making the case for local journalism

Sue Robinson   Reporters go on the offensive

Eric Nuzum   The year of the DIY podcast network

Seema Yasmin   We will create our own spaces

Andrew Ramsammy   The great re-pivot to audio

Masuma Ahuja   Make foreign coverage less foreign

J. Siguru Wahutu   Think 2018 was bad? Wait until you see 2019

Greg Emerson   Power to the user

Kawandeep Virdee   Media wants to take care of you

Juleyka Lantigua   Podcasting battles East Coast bias

Borja Bergareche Sainz de los Terreros   Entering a more balanced era

Adam Thomas   In Europe, foundations invest in news

Rick Berke   The year of loyalty

Mike Caulfield   Ditch the media literacy cynicism and get to work

Jesse Brown   Canada’s subsidy for news backfires

Darryl Holliday   Let’s talk about power (yours)

Rebecca Lee Sanchez   We are all actors in the running rampant of political theater

Marie Shanahan   Newsrooms take the comments sections back from platforms

Steve Myers   From trying to cover it all to covering what matters

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