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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 5/2/19

Guardian Turns Profit for 1st Time in 20 years ~ What Encouraging Great News for Struggling Journalists!

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Naomi Klein with Katharine Viner, Conversation, 29 April 2015 Naomi Klein is an award-winning journalist, syndicated columnist, fellow at The Nation Institute, and author of several international bestsellers. Her new book ...
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One of my very favorite sources in the entire world is the Guardian, published in the United Kingdom. Today, via What's New In Publishing, came some very good news, all of which is quite appropriate, given the Guardian's vantage point and approach to news in general. This news should be most illuminating and encouraging for any at the helm of an online news venue, especially OpEdNews.

From an article by Monojoy Bhattacharjee

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"The Guardian has been consistently loss-making," read the Wikipedia entry on the publication, till yesterday. It was quickly edited after the British daily announced that The Guardian and the Observer have broken evenfor the first time in 20 yearsaided by record online traffic, reduced costs and increased financial contributions from readers.

"Guardian News & Media recorded an £800,000 operating profit for the 2018-19 financial year compared with a £57m loss three years previously," the company said, "ensuring the business is existing on a sustainable basis following the culmination of a turnaround programme put in place following years of substantial losses."

Katharine Viner: The Guardian has made a small operating profit! It's been a brilliant team effort and it's mostly thanks to Guardian readers we are out of danger and the new business model is working

click here "

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This is an extraordinary accomplishment in a very difficult market, because The Guardian's model is unique among news publishers. It keeps its journalism outside a paywall, while asking readers to contribute to help subsidize its reporting, and this separates it from all of its competitors, who either demand payment for access, or choose to go for scale and digital advertising money.

A message requesting support, on the Guardian website

"Our unique ownership model means we are not controlled by a billionaire owner, or a group of shareholders demanding financial returns any profits made, and all financial contributions from readers, are reinvested directly into our journalism," said Katharine Viner, editor-in-chief of The Guardian.

She said that listening carefully to readers' input over the past three years "has helped inform the creation of a business model in which our editorial independence remains paramount, and which keeps Guardian and Observer journalism open and accessible to everyone regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay."

Three years ago we faced a very different situation, when a broken business model for news was threatening to destroy media organisations around the world: print advertising was collapsing, newspaper sales were declining, and the promise of digital advertising growth was going almost entirely to Google and Facebook. These threats still exist, and while we've found a way to counter them, the situation remains fragile.

Katharine Viner, the Guardian News & Media editor-in-chief

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Total monthly page views increased over the last three years from 790m in January 2016 to 1.35bn in March 2019, and it now has 655,000 regular monthly supporters across both print and digital, with a further 300,000 people making one-off contributions in the last year alone. Total revenues at Guardian News & Media grew 3% to £223m a year, with 55% of the company's income coming from digital activities.

"In times of extraordinary political and economic upheaval the need for quality, independent reporting and commentary has never been greater," said Katharine Viner.

"Guardian journalism is flourishing," she concluded, "We are now in a sustainable position, and better able to deliver on our purpose by producing outstanding journalism that understands and illuminates our times."

(Article changed on May 2, 2019 at 20:52)


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I think this is really encouraging for any struggling news venue, and it presents a workable model that might help those guiding such venues. So there is a path to journalism surviving even in hostile times, with contributions going to candidates rather than as it was earlier when donors gave more to news sites.

For example, consider this kind of brilliant coverage:

Greta Thunberg tells MPs: 'Our future was sold' Greta Thunberg took her climate message to the Houses of Parliament in Westminster on Tuesday. The 16-year-old Swedish climate change activist told a ...
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Submitted on Thursday, May 2, 2019 at 8:25:26 PM

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