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OpenAI will give local news millions to experiment with AI


OpenAI will give local news millions to experiment with AI

Some of the funding will go to form a “studio” within the American Journalism Project; the rest will go to about 10 of AJP’s grantees.

I’m having the strongest sense of deja vu. It wasn’t all that long ago that I heard Emily Bell tell a news:rewired audience that she believed publishers would get into bed with Big Tech if they thought they’d get some money from it. Well, alright, it was almost a decade ago – but I’m still getting reminded of the early days where Facebook and Google were seen as frenemies and not just enemies.

Now, as Hanaa’ Tameez explains for Nieman Lab, another big tech company is looking to cut a financial deal with publishers for use of its content: “In an announcement on Tuesday, OpenAI said it will give $5 million to venture philanthropy firm American Journalism Project to figure out how artificial intelligence can best be used to support local news.”

Look, it’s a very different situation, and it’ll take a while before we even know what the relationship between AI-based organisations and publishers ultimately looks like. But you’d hope that this time, at least, publishers go into discussions with an eye on their own sustainability and less on short-term revenue.


The power of newsletters

Chris Sutcliffe from Media Voices joins to discuss the importance of newsletters.

I’m on this week’s episode of The Addition podcast, talking with friend of Media Voices Charlotte Henry about newsletters. It helps a lot that Charlotte is an award-winning newsletter writer, having taken home the best solo newsletter award at the inaugural Publisher Newsletter Awards, so I could sit back and bask in her expertise. I was able to share, though, some of the chat I heard at the awards, about how newsletters are still undervalued despite their offering to publishers.


Sun and Mail publishers examine claims against journalist Dan Wootton

GB News presenter facing allegations he inappropriately offered colleagues large sums in return for sexual material

An update on Peter’s story from yesterday on GB News’ Dan Wootton. The Guardian’s Jim Waterson is reporting that Wootton’s former employees the Mail and the Sun are investigating his conduct while he was at those titles. If you read Popbitch (which you should) you’ll know that allegations of his misbehaviour there were an open secret. I’m sure that the usual suspects will continue to reputation-wash GB News, but frankly this is another nail in the coffin of Wootton’s employers’ reputations.


TikTok’s new program aims to identify rising artists in the music industry

TikTok is launching a new program that is designed to identify the next wave rising artists in the music industry, the company announced on Tuesday.

This is related to my chat with Charlotte on The Addition earlier. I spoke about the disincentive big platforms have to actually invest in upcoming voices. That’s true even in podcasting, where some of the platforms commit maybe as much to supporting upcoming talent as they do to keep big and problematic names on-side. Just imagine if some platform actually invested as much in up-and-coming journalism…

More from Media Voices


Big Noises: Ricky Sutton on publisher valuations, AI, and bears

Ricky Sutton talks about the frenemy relationship of publishers and platforms, the role of AI, and how to talk your way into covering a war.


Info: The Publisher Newsletter Summit and Publisher Podcast Summit

Find out more about the Publisher Newsletter Summit and Publisher Podcast Summit from the Media Voices team


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Like Austin Kleon says, the Media Voices Podcast is free, but it’s not cheap. Become a supporter of The Media Voices team today! Monthly subscriptions and one-off contributions help us keep going.

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