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.
An introduction to media viability: the definition and framework used to approach media viability in this resource guide as well as a summary of the current viability of the media sector.
What Can a Media Outlet Do to Boost its Viability?
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
|New Video Series Examines Best Practices for Making Investigative Journalism Sustainable||2020||Global||Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN)||Koch, A.|
|Journalism & the Pandemic: A Global Snapshot of Impacts||2020||Global||International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) & Tow Center for Digital Journalism||Posetti, J. et al.|
|When Covering a Crisis, Should Your Content be Free?||2020||Global||International Journalists' Network (IJNet)||Fritsch, M.|
|Income Models of Independent Media in Difficult Contexts||2020||Global||Free Press Unlimited||Schot, E.|
|Building Regional Strategies for Media Development in the Middle East and North Africa||2020||MENA||Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA)||el-Issawi, F. & Benequista, N.|
|Reporting Facts: Free From Fear or Favour||2020||Global||UNESCO||Dragomir, M.|
|Measuring Beyond Money: The Media Viability Indicators (MVIs)||2020||Global||Deutsche Welle Akademie||Jurrat, N. & Moore, L.|
|Case Study: How a Medium Can Grow during Crisis||2020||Germany||Deutsche Welle Akademie||Deutsche Welle Akademie|
|The Wisdom of the Crowd: Promoting Media Development through Deliberate Initiatives||2020||Ireland, Malawi, Mexico, United States of America||Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA)||Matasick, C.|
|Case Study: The Tunisian Journalists Who Built a Business Model That Frees Them to Investigate||2020||Tunisia||Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN)||Foroudi, L.|
|Publish Less, but Publish Better: Pivoting to Paid in Local News||2020||Finland, France, Germany, United Kingdom||Reuters||Jenkins, J.|
|Local Radio Stations in Africa: Sustainability or Pragmatic Viability?||2020||Uganda, Zambia||Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA)||Meyers, M. & Harford, N.|