Yesterday, Wordpress's parent company Automattic launched Newspack, a new publishing platform tailor-made for local newsrooms. And its backed by $2.4M in funding led by Google.
How it works: Newspack will operate as a secure, inexpensive toolkit for small to medium-sized newsrooms that will make their technical decisions easier. It will definitely support existing Wordpress plugins and *maybe* include website design, commerce options or CMS configuration.
“Sounds, essentially, like a sponsored/subsidized, hosted, distribution of WordPress” - Chris Messina
Interestingly, Facebook had a similar announcement this morning. 🤔
Today the tech giant announced a $300M (!) investment in local news over the next three years. For context, Google committed $300M to news products and initiatives last March — with Newspack now being one of the beneficiaries. 💸
It's worth noting that Facebook and Google control the online ad market, and digital publishers have traditionally tried (but struggled) to make money from online ads. Regardless, money is money and the survival of local media is good news for all.
In other news (how many news puns is too many?), we've been playing with some new writing tools: Write Together is a new spin on blogging and 200 Words a Day is a dead-simple tool that helps you write a little every single day.
It's the last day to vote for the Golden Kitty finalists! Winners will be announced Thursday January 17th. 🏆