Happy St Andrews Day! Today’s newsletter is brought to you by Peter, obvs. Just a reminder that our annual report, Media Moments 2022, is launching TODAY at 4pm GMT. If you’d like to join the virtual launch event, just fill in the short form here.
Community platform Guild has been speaking to Katie Vanneck-Smith, co-founder of Tortoise Media and soon to be CEO of Hearst UK. She talked about the origins of slow news outlet Tortoise and how her departure is only the end of the beginning. “When I told the team that I was leaving after five years of helping set up Tortoise, I said I’ve been part of the prologue.”
She also spoke of the importance of community to Tortoise, saying the reason they focus on memberships over subscriptions is because community matters. “Giving our members a voice in the journalistic process really matters, because we’re not trying to educate and inform; we’re trying to get to a better understanding.”
Looking ahead, with Series A funding in place, Tortoise is keeping its growth plans conservative, but ‘ambitious’. With a community of 200,000 in place and 55,000 paying members, the business is hoping to leverage its pivot to audio to convert 1% of its 1.5 million podcast listeners to paid membership.
Yep, micropayments are back. To be fair they have never gone away; the pros and cons of paying-as-you-go have been up for discussion for as long as I’ve been covering digital media. Inspired by Twitter alternative Post’s focus on micropayments, Brian Morrissey concedes that pay-per-article solutions make all the sense in the world… unless you’re a publisher.
You wouldn’t know it to see Elmo’s decision to stop enforcing Twitter’s COVID misinformation policy, but fake news on COVID, politics, and health have been on the rise. Unlike Twitter 2.0, Google and YouTube are vowing to fight misinformation with a $13 million grant to the International Fact-Checking Network.
Good news. According to the News Media Alliance, advertisers increased ad placement on magazine websites by 23% in 2022. Yes this is the magazine industry marking i’s own homework, but there’s some good stuff in here if you are trying to argue for magazines as ‘trusted sources of high-quality journalism’ that provide ‘a brand-safe environment for advertisers’, which we all know they absolutely do (mostly).
For our final episode of this deep-dive season, we’re joined by Internews CEO Meera Selva to look at how climate coverage is coming to the forefront of publisher strategies, and how journalists are evolving the way they communicate climate issues with audiences.
Our annual report launches today, November 30th! It’s taking a look at what’s occurred in the media over 2022 – so it’s a small task, obviously. Fill in the form to pre-register for the report and get an invite to today’s virtual launch featuring BuzzFeed’s Caroline Fenner, AdWeek’s Stephen Lepitak and Poool’s Ludivine Paquet.