Try This at Home

This subsection of the Need to Know newsletter offers useful insights and ideas you can try yourself.

6 metrics that can measure the impact of fact-checking

Fact-checking too often depends on anecdotes as evidence of its impact, Alexios Mantzarlis writes, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Mantzarlis suggests six metrics that fact-checkers can use to measure the impact of their work, including measuring the amount of times a fact-check is quoted or referenced in legislative bodies, measuring the web […]

Monetizing chat apps will require less advertising and more marketing

Chat applications are fundamentally different from anything news organizations have tried to monetize before, Jarrod Dicker. In order to successfully monetize these apps, Dicker says news organizations will have to move away from advertising and closer to marketing. Chat apps are more personal and more direct, making people less receptive to unwanted interruptions like ads. […]

A new tool called FOIA Mapper will help you figure out the best way to request the documents you need

Filing a Freedom of Information Act request can be complicated, but a new Knight Foundation-backed tool called FOIA Mapper is trying to make it easier. Created by data journalist Max Galka, FOIA Mapper tries to help users figure out the best way to request the document they need. The tool includes a centralized, searchable database […]

How Gannett newspapers across Wisconsin teamed up to cover youth suicide

With newspapers scattered across the country, Gannett newspapers are increasingly teaming up to cover big stories. In Wisconsin, 10 newspapers throughout the state worked together to cover the state’s youth suicide problem. About 25 reporters were working on the story, and the newspapers also held 10 town hall meetings to discuss the problem with their […]

Why The New York Times has a team dedicated to working with its apps and how local news organizations can adopt this strategy

New York Times’ Beta team is dedicated to working with NYT’s various apps, many of which aren’t necessarily hard or breaking news related. With apps such as Cooking or its real estate app, the Beta team is trying to build a deeper connection with readers and helping readers access some of the content they’re most […]

How different news organizations are deciding which platforms are a priority

News organizations are going where the readers are. But most news organizations can’t succeed on all platforms, meaning they have to decide which platforms are the most important for them. Because its Snapchat Discover editions have a 76 percent completion rate, Cosmopolitan is prioritizing Snapchat. The Guardian isn’t focusing on Instant Articles because it hasn’t […]

How to decide what tools are the right tools to use in your newsroom

There’s tons of tools available to newsrooms, NPR’s Brian Boyer writes. “Every tool forces you down a path,” Boyer writes, making it important to determine what tools are the right tools for your newsroom. Boyer’s advice for picking the right tools: “Before you select a tool, you must first intimately understand the problem you’re trying […]

NowThis says by eliminating the need for users to click through to their site, it increased video viewership

NowThis got rid of its website just over a year ago, and says by doing so it has increased the viewership of its videos. Mario Garcia writes that while not all news organizations should simply eliminate their websites and post entirely on social media, they can learn from this as a way to better engage […]

How The Washington Post is using vertical video

Thanks to Snapchat and social media, vertical video has a future, and news organizations are starting to embrace the format. The Washington Post used vertical video to broadcast the recent relocation of its newsroom, and it often posts vertical videos to its Facebook and Twitter pages. The Post also added a “sticky” video player to article […]

A new tool called Chatfuel helps publishers build bots for messaging apps

Some news organizations are looking to messaging apps as a new way to deliver news to their readers, but how can a news organization get started building a bot? To make it simpler, a new tool called Chatfuel lets publishers (or anyone) create a bot for messaging apps, allowing users to focus on certain topics […]