Adam Westbrook // ideas on digital storytelling and publishing

Why don’t you set up a journalism collaborative?

Posted in Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on May 12, 2010

Every day until the 20th of May I’m featuring a creative new way for journalists to exploit the digital age to create new job & business opportunities for themselves. Full details are in Next Generation Journalist: 10 New Ways to Make Money in Journalism available for download on May 20th.

03. launch a journalism collaborative

The internet, and the digital age we live in, is great isn’t it? It means you can create content and publish it fast, cheap and without fear of failure. The same applies to business, which is why setting up your own journalism business is so easy it’s almost stupid not to give it a go yourself.

Launching a journalism collaborative is a really effective way of doing this because it keeps the costs – and the risks – to an absolute minimum. Think of it as your average start-up, except it has no employees, no red tape…it doesn’t even have an office.

Launching your own journalism collaborative…

  • gives you the opportunity to do the type of journalism you love most — for money
  • lets you start a business in a flexible and less-risky way
  • allows you to share the risk of launching a business with others and share the profits
  • is easy to bootstrap

Collaboratives aren’t anything new in one sense. In fact the collaboratives that already exist are known for setting the standard in their fields. Take the most famous one – Magnum Photos: a collaborative of young innovative photojournalists who re-wrote the rules of the game in the mid 20th century.

The industry is crying out for a new Magnum. An agency of talented journalists who are in it to rewrite the rules and produce epic shit. Could that be you and your collaborators?

Find out how to do it.

5 Responses

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  1. Paul Treacy said, on May 12, 2010 at 8:50 am

    Dude, you are so innovative. I hope you’re making a fortune. You’re at the cutting edge.

  2. rayduff said, on May 12, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Hi Adam – The Magnum Photos link is broken.

  3. Muhim said, on May 13, 2010 at 6:36 am

    Any examples of strong newer collaboratives?

  4. adamwestbrook said, on May 13, 2010 at 7:43 am

    Hi Muhim,
    Yes newer collaboratives are starting to emerge, including: VII (a photo/multimedia agency like Magnum); the Bombay Flying Club based between Europe and Asia; Not On The Wires and Duckrabbit in the UK work on the same principles too.

    Thanks for pointing out the link error Ray, much appreciated🙂

    And thanks for the kind words Paul!


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