The purpose

  • You want to spend time reporting stories and reaching audience, not wrestling with technology
  • You want to embrace best practices, not build your system from scratch
  • You want to find a path to financial sustainability by using tools suited to the task
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

The problem

  • There are too many technology options, and all are hard to evaluate
  • Most CMSs are built for publishing, not for growing a business
  • Small publishers face both high costs and limited flexibility
  • Emerging technologies are hard to integrate after the fact
  • Publishers are often torn between in-house and contract support
  • Everyone’s trying to solve the same problem, but largely on their own

Newspack was conceived by the developers of WordPress.com to address those issues. WordPress is already the tool of choice among most small publishers. But it can be daunting to setup and maintain.

Newspack solves that by pre-configuring about 50 different plugins that are not only designed to meet the needs of news publishers but also represent best practices across the industry.

It means you can put your time an energy into the journalism and the business decision-making that drives your site — not the technology that powers it.

The solution

  • Built for digital news companies: incorporates best practices from across the industry
  • Built on WordPress: the world’s preferred CMS, powering over a third of the web
  • Networked: publishers drive development priorities and contribute code
  • Open: liberally incorporates smart solutions from third-party providers
  • Portable: it’s open source, so you’re not locked into a single proprietary solution
  • Flexible: adding new features isn’t scary. It’s what we’re built to do
  • Cost-effective: priced for small- and medium-sized news operations
  • Supported: 24×7 technical support; account managers for every client

The goal of Newspack is to provide a foundation for a sustainable model for local journalism.

Development has been funded by the Google News Initiative, The Lenfest Institute, The Knight Foundation, and Civil Media. So publishers only have to shoulder operating costs.

In its first year, more than 50 different news organizations around the globe have signed onto the platform, with many more waiting to join up. Our goal is to have 100 sites launched by the end of the year.


Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

Join the conversation

Newspack isn’t simply a tool. It’s a news collective.

With a dedicated Slack Workspace, we currently have over 150 editors, designers, product and business folks actively discussing the issues they confront as small news publishers.


Features

  • Fully configured publishing system to support editing, distribution and revenue generation
  • Ongoing research and development,  incorporating industry best practices
  • Participation in a growing network of journalists, active in our Slack channel, sharing insights
  • Integrated access to third-party tools and services
  • Robust layout and design tools
  • Integrated newsletter tools
  • Integrated revenue tools for ad serving, subscription and membership
  • Hosting (with SLA)
  • Mobile support
  • Security and backups
  • Automatic updates
  • SEO
  • High speed image and video delivery
  • Archive/backfile conversation
  • Benchmarking against competitive set (2020)
  • Mobile publishing app
  • Site monitoring
  • AMP-first pages for fast mobile loading
  • Guaranteed portability

For more information

Check out the survey of small publishers that News Revenue Hub conducted in advance of Newspack’s launch. And the followup survey they conducted to gauge how we were performing.