Feature: Local journalism that contributes to social progress

Local media and community outlets have at the core of their works the social issues they strive to impact. The latest LM4D blog post by the Centre for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom (CMPF) explores the social integration efforts of local news. Researchers Urbano Reviglio and Danielle Borges explore social integration techniques by local and community media outlets in the EU. They spotlight specific best practices from “street newspapers”, newspapers or magazines targeted at people in marginalised communities. Innovative responses offered by local media outlets are essential to survive the harsh competition of the attention economy. While local and community…

Local media and journalist groups awarded half a million to improve local reporting

The Local Media for Democracy project (LM4D) is supporting 25 small media outlets and freelance journalist groups from around Europe in the second round of funding. They will receive a total of  €667,854 funding as well as mentorship to strengthen their reach and funding models so that they can better serve their local communities. The 25 media outlets and journalist groups are from: Bulgaria (1), Czech Republic (3), France (2), Greece (1), Latvia (1), Lithuania (2), Poland (6), Portugal (3), Romania (3), Slovakia (1), Slovenia (2) and Spain (1).  The jury, whose identities are anonymous, selected initiatives that operate in…

Understanding audiences is crucial in an ever-changing digital environment

Audience research methods was the topic of the two workshops organised by the Local Media for Democracy (LM4D) project, as part of a series of workshops developed for this project. Journalists from the first round of grantees of the LM4D Media Funding Scheme attended the two online meetings on the subject.   Understanding audiences in the modern and ever-changing digital environment is crucial not only for developing content and distribution strategies, but also for developing innovative products and business models.  “LM4D offers a capacity building program to assist local media in achieving their project objectives and strengthening their long-term sustainability. The…

Feature: Newsletters and podcasts are on the rise for local media in Europe

The digital transformation has encouraged local and community media outlets to explore new strategies for audience engagement and content distribution, according to a recent blog post by the Centre for Media Pluralism and Media Freedom (CMPF). Researchers Urbano Reviglio and Danielle Borges surveyed various best practices of local and community media in Europe. They found innovative responses offered by local media outlets to engage audiences amidst the harsh competition of the attention economy. Newsletters are one of the most popular strategies, which are used by media outlets around the region as a tool to deliver customised and specifically-targeted news to their readers.…

Ireland: Local and independent newspaper fights for underserved communities

Dublin county is one of the smallest in Ireland but by far the most populated, given the capital city sits there. While the centre is bustling with activity and news, just 20km north risks getting left behind. Local newspaper Dublin Inquirer is hoping to fill this gap by expanding its innovative business model to the region of Fingal county.  Towards the end of last year, one of the largest media companies in Ireland shut its edition covering Fingal in the north of Dublin. The Dublin Inquirer, a local and independent newspaper, is hoping to fill this gap by expanding their…

Lithuanian public prosecutor investigates story thanks to local radio station

Lithuanian radio station, Radio FM99, a partner of the EFJ-led Local Media 4 Democracy (LM4D) project, published a story about a development plan that would destroy the historical heritage of Alytus. The story gained traction and the Prosecutors’ Office opened an investigation into the plan. All of this was funded by the LM4D and the radio benefited from the mentorship by the project. We talk to Vilija Ramanauskiene, journalist at Radio FM99, to find out more. Radio FM99 is a legacy radio outlet in South Lithuania and one of the first commercial radio stations in independent Lithuania. This year, it…

LM4D: How to make local reporting impactful?

The first mentorship workshop was held for the successful candidates of the Local Media for Democracy project this week. Within the project, 17 media outlets across Europe received funding and the opportunity to technically develop their media and projects to help mitigate news deserts in their regions.  The first online workshop, organised by the International Media Support (IMS), took place on 7 September. The IMS advisors Iryna Vidavana and Clare Cook led the workshop for the 12 successful applicants from around the EU. This first webinar was centred around the  common element for all projects to focus on – defining…

17 local media outlets awarded funds to mitigate news deserts in the EU

The LocalMedia4Democracy project is supporting 17 small local media outlets. These outlets aim to serve the public interest in localities and regions where access to information has significantly decreased in the European Union. This grant scheme is operated by Journalismfund Europe and International Media Support (IMS), and co-funded by the European Commission.  The 17 media outlets are from Belgium (1), Croatia (1), France (2), Hungary (2), Ireland (1), Italy (1), Latvia (1), Lithuania (1), Poland (4), Portugal (1), Romania (1) and Spain (1). The total amount distributed among the 17 proposals was €524.265.  Check the list of the granted media…

Lack of independent media funding is a major cause of news desertification around Europe

The Centre for Media Pluralism and Media Pluralism (CMPF) published their preliminary study, “News deserts in Europe: assessing risks for local and community media in the 27 EU Member States”. The study, carried out as part of the Local Media for Democracy (LM4D) project, illustrated that one of the main causes for the desertification of accessible independent media throughout Europe is the lack of adequate and sustainable funding for media organisations. For the scope of this project, and in line with the methodology adopted by the Media Pluralism Monitor, the CMPF developed a comprehensive and Europe-specific definition of news deserts…