Independent media around the world are struggling to continue their existence and remain independent. The changing media market, a decline in the trust in media, government interference in the working of media, or attacks on journalists are all affecting the ability of media outlets to earn revenue and conduct independent reporting. ‘Media viability’ refers to all factors that influence the (continued) existence of independent media outlets.
The resource guide contains information on what media viability is in general, as well as on media viability issues that are inside the direct sphere of influence of media outlets. The concept media viability is however much broader than this. To navigate quickly to the sections of your interest, please consult the navigator below.
In this section you find information on the factors that are in the sphere of influence of media outlets. Here the focus is on best practices that arise from the research on a media business’ operating model, business model, relationship with the audience and quality of content. Also, this section summarises the research conducted by Free Press Unlimited on the income models of media in challenging environments.
Lots of practical information that can help media with the development of their business models, including links to accelerators and media labs around the world, guides and toolkits, and also more information about Roadmap for Media Growth – Free Press Unlimited’s toolkit for business model development.
Evidence base: Media viability
|Crisis and Opportunity: How Independent Media Can Learn from the Pandemic||2020||Global||Open Society Foundations||report|
|Local Radio Stations in Africa Prove Resilient Amid COVID-19||2020||Uganda, Zimbabwe||Myers, M. et al.||case study/ies|
|Digital News Report 2020||2020||Global||Reuters Institute||report|
|Donor Aid and Private Investment: Their Interplay With Media Development||2020||Africa||Nyarko, J. et al||research report|
|Local Radio Stations in Africa: Sustainability or Pragmatic Viability?||2020||Uganda, Zambia||Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA)||case study/ies, report|
|Case Study: The Tunisian Journalists Who Built a Business Model That Frees Them to Investigate||2020||Tunisia||Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN)||case study/ies|
|Case Study: How a Medium Can Grow during Crisis||2020||Germany||Deutsche Welle Akademie||case study/ies, webinar|
|Viability of Media Start-Ups: Sharing Successes||2014||Global||Deutsche Welle Akademie||webinar|
|Case Studies on Paywall Implementation||2018||Malaysia, Poland||Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF)||case study/ies|
|New Video Series Examines Best Practices for Making Investigative Journalism Sustainable||2020||Global||Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN)||case study/ies, commentary|
|Launching a membership program: Lessons from the frontline||2020||South Africa||Daily Maverick||case study/ies|
|How the UNC-Duke rivalry helped two nonprofit student newspapers collaborate — and make revenue||2019||United States of America||Perel, E. and Beck, C.||case study/ies|