20200
P
1
20100
R  E
2
2070
D   I   C
3
2050
T   I   O   N
4
2040
S   F   O   R   J
5
2030
O  U  R  N  A  L
6
2020
I  S  M  2  0  2  0
7

Opening closed systems

“As on-demand audio and podcast listening increase in 2020 and beyond, we’ll see new audiences take shape, more experiments, and deeper stories made possible by the medium.”

Audio has always been an extraordinary medium for journalism. The year ahead will be critical for that very intersection, audio and journalism — in particular for podcasts. Research suggests that 15 percent of podcast listeners worldwide and rising are tuning into news podcasts. There are other positive indicators of growth, too: the announcement that the Pulitzer Prizes will feature a new category for audio reporting, a rise in investments in the space, and IAB’s projection that this will be a billion-dollar industry by 2021.

As the podcast market here in the U.S. matures, journalists and storytellers around the world are also increasingly turning to audio. But, as with all maturing sectors, there are caveats. For instance, podcasting is built on the open values of the web: open and free. This is an important cornerstone of journalism in the public interest. But excessive consolidation or the outsized influence of gatekeepers could stifle growth.

Similarly, advances in ad tech could challenge notions of consumer privacy. In order to keep an open invitation to new audiences — and increasingly, as the data suggests, to news consumers — now’s the time to set standards rooted in strong values that will allow the medium to continue healthily.

As on-demand audio and podcast listening increase in 2020 and beyond, we’ll see new audiences take shape, more experiments, and deeper stories made possible by the medium. And we must enable this work through a vigorous spirit of innovation, as technology is inextricably linked with content strategy. This is no small task for an industry in flux, but since the beginning of PRX, this kind of innovative mindset has informed all we do. We’ve remained committed to opening closed systems and building pathways in support of new generations of independent audio makers and the audiences they reach.

Kerri Hoffman is CEO of PRX.

Audio has always been an extraordinary medium for journalism. The year ahead will be critical for that very intersection, audio and journalism — in particular for podcasts. Research suggests that 15 percent of podcast listeners worldwide and rising are tuning into news podcasts. There are other positive indicators of growth, too: the announcement that the Pulitzer Prizes will feature a new category for audio reporting, a rise in investments in the space, and IAB’s projection that this will be a billion-dollar industry by 2021.

As the podcast market here in the U.S. matures, journalists and storytellers around the world are also increasingly turning to audio. But, as with all maturing sectors, there are caveats. For instance, podcasting is built on the open values of the web: open and free. This is an important cornerstone of journalism in the public interest. But excessive consolidation or the outsized influence of gatekeepers could stifle growth.

Similarly, advances in ad tech could challenge notions of consumer privacy. In order to keep an open invitation to new audiences — and increasingly, as the data suggests, to news consumers — now’s the time to set standards rooted in strong values that will allow the medium to continue healthily.

As on-demand audio and podcast listening increase in 2020 and beyond, we’ll see new audiences take shape, more experiments, and deeper stories made possible by the medium. And we must enable this work through a vigorous spirit of innovation, as technology is inextricably linked with content strategy. This is no small task for an industry in flux, but since the beginning of PRX, this kind of innovative mindset has informed all we do. We’ve remained committed to opening closed systems and building pathways in support of new generations of independent audio makers and the audiences they reach.

Kerri Hoffman is CEO of PRX.

Margarita Noriega   The platforms try to figure out what to do with single-subject newsrooms

Lucas Graves   A smarter conversation about how (and why) fact-checking matters

Millie Tran   Wicked

Bill Grueskin   Our ethics codes get an overhaul

Richard J. Tofel   A constraint of the reader-revenue model emerges

A.J. Bauer   A fork in the road for conservative media

Matt DeRienzo   Local broadcasters begin to fill the gaps left by newspapers

Elizabeth Hansen and Jesse Holcomb   Local news initiatives run into a capital shortage

Beena Raghavendran   The year of the local engagement reporter

John Garrett   It’s the best time in a century to start a local news organization

Carrie Brown-Smith   Engaged journalism: It’s finally happening

Jake Shapiro   Podcasting gets listener relationship management

Peter Bale   Lies get further normalized

Jasmine McNealy   A call for context

Doris Truong   The year of radical salary transparency

Geneva Overholser   Death to bothsidesism

Lauren Duca   The rise of the journalistic influencer

Barbara Gray   Join local libraries on the frontlines of civic engagement

Joanne McNeil   A return to blogs (finally? sort of?)

Sue Robinson   Campaign coverage as test bed for engagement experiments

james Wahutu   Western journalists, learn from your African peers

Rachel Glickhouse   Journalists get left behind in the industry’s decline

M. Scott Havens   First-party data becomes media’s most important currency

Adam Thomas   The silver bullet

Ernie Smith   The death of the industry fad

Nushin Rashidian   Are platforms a bridge or a lifeline?

Tonya Mosley   The neutrality vs. objectivity game ends

Rachel Schallom   The value of push alerts goes beyond open rates

Ståle Grut   OSINT journalism goes mainstream

Imaeyen Ibanga   Let’s take it slow

Raney Aronson-Rath   News deserts will proliferate — but so will new solutions

Meg Marco   Everything happens somewhere

Monica Drake   A renewed focus on misinformation

Joni Deutsch   Podcasting unsilences the silent

Meredith Artley   Stronger solidarity among news organizations

Nikki Usher   All systems down

Rachel Davis Mersey   The business of local TV news will enter its downward slide

Annie Rudd   The expanded ambiguity of the news photograph

Jeremy Gilbert and Jarrod Dicker   A call for collaboration between storytelling and tech

Zizi Papacharissi   A president leads, the press follows, reality fades

Don Day   Respect the non-paying audience

Julia B. Chan   We 👏 take 👏 breaks 👏

S. Mitra Kalita   The race to 2021

Brian Moritz   The end of “stick to sports”

Moreno Cruz Osório   In Brazil, collaboration in a time of state attacks

Laura E. Davis   Know the context your journalism is operating within

Monique Judge   The year to organize, unionize, and fight

Whitney Phillips   A time to question core beliefs

Kevin Douglas Grant   The free press stands against authoritarians’ attacks on truth

Tamar Charney   From broadcast to bespoke

Hossein Derakhshan   AI can’t conjure up an Errol Morris

Steve Henn   The dawning audio web

Tanya Cordrey   Saying no to more good ideas

Pablo Boczkowski   The day after November 4

John Keefe   Journalism gets hacked

Mike Caulfield   Native verification tools for the blue checkmark crowd

Rick Berke   Incoming fire from both left and right

Josh Schwartz   Publishers move beyond the metered paywall

Jakob Moll   A slow-moving tech backlash among young people

Jeff Kofman   Speed through technology

Logan Molyneux and Shannon McGregor   Think twice before turning to Twitter

Victor Pickard   We reclaim a public good

Talia Stroud   The work of reconnecting starts November 4

Logan Jaffe   You don’t need fancy tools to listen

Sarah Schmalbach   Journalist, quantify thyself

Sarah Marshall   The year to learn about news moments

Irving Washington   Leadership isn’t something you learn on the job

Bill Adair   A Nobel Prize, a Brad Pitt film, and a Taylor Swift song

Errin Haines   Race and gender aren’t a 2020 story — they’re the story

Dannagal G. Young   Let’s disrupt the logic that’s driving Americans apart

Emily Withrow   The year we kill the news article

Kourtney Bitterly   Transparency isn’t just a desire, it’s an expectation

Christa Scharfenberg   It’s time to make journalism a field that supports and respects women

Michael W. Wagner   Increasingly fractured, but little bit deliberative

Fiona Spruill   The climate crisis gets the coverage it deserves

Alice Antheaume   Trade “politics” for “power”

Heidi Tworek   The year of positive pushback

Jeremy Olshan   All journalism should be service journalism

Elizabeth Dunbar   Frank talk, and then action

Marie Gilot   This is fine

Simon Galperin   Journalism becomes more democratic

Linda Solomon Wood   Everyone in your organization, moving toward a common goal

Tom Glaisyer   Journalism can emerge newly vibrant and powerful

L. Gordon Crovitz   Fighting misinformation requires journalism, not secret algorithms

Cory Haik   We’re already consuming the future of news — now we have to produce it

Nathalie Malinarich   Betting on loyalty

Cindy Royal   Prepare media students for skills, not job titles

Carl Bialik   Journalists will try running the whole shop

Jim Brady   We’ll complain about other people living in bubbles while ignoring our own

Nicholas Jackson   What’s left of local gets comfortable with reader support

Mary Walter-Brown and Tristan Loper   Power to the people (on your audience team)

Jonas Kaiser   Russian bots are just today’s slacktivists

Eric Nuzum   Podcasting finally creates another mega-hit show

Candis Callison   Taking a cue from Indigenous journalists on climate change

Seth C. Lewis   20 questions for 2020

Heather Bryant   Some kinds of journalism aren’t worth saving

Catalina Albeanu   Rebuilding journalism, together

Anthony Nadler   Clash of Clans: Election Edition

An Xiao Mina   The Forum we wanted, the forum we got

Juleyka Lantigua-Williams   A changing industry amps up podcasters’ ambitions

Alana Levinson   Brand-backed media gets another look

Alfred Hermida and Mary Lynn Young   The promise of nonprofit journalism

Kerri Hoffman   Opening closed systems

Sara K. Baranowski   A big year for little newspapers

Joe Amditis   Collaborative journalism takes its rightful place at the table

Kathleen Searles   Pay more attention to attention

Stefanie Murray   Charitable giving goes collaborative

Nico Gendron   Make better products if you want to reach Gen Z

Mira Lowe   The year of student-powered journalism

Ben Werdmuller   Use the tools of journalism to save it

Knight Foundation   Five generations of journalists, learning from each other

Craig Newmark   Formalizing newsrooms’ battle against disinformation

Sarah Alvarez   I’m ready for post-news

Kristen Muller   The year we operationalize community engagement

Greg Emerson   News apps fall further behind

Sonali Prasad   Climate change storytelling gets multidimensional

Matthew Pressman   News consumers divide into haves and have-nots

Mariana Moura Santos   The future of journalism is collaborative

Colleen Shalby   Journalists become media literacy teachers

Alexandra Borchardt   Get out of the office and talk to people

Masuma Ahuja   Slower, quieter, more measured and thoughtful

Helen Havlak   Platforms shine a light on original reporting

Francesco Zaffarano   TikTok without generational prejudice

Joshua Darr   All that campaign cash will make the media’s problems worse

Cristina Kim   Public media stops trying to serve “everybody”

Felix Salmon   Spotify launches a news channel

Madelyn Sanfilippo and Yafit Lev-Aretz   News coverage gets geo-fragmented

Sarah Stonbely   More people start caring about news inequality

Rasmus Kleis Nielsen   The business we want, not the business we had

Jennifer Brandel   A love letter from the year 2073

Brenda P. Salinas   Treating MP3 files like text

Dan Shanoff   Sports media enters the Bronny era

Mario García   Think small (screen)