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Knight Foundation Helps Fund 17 Innovative Media Projects

KnightLOGOMore media innovation is coming, in part thanks to the Knight Foundation (and of course, the great minds they help fund). The foundation recognizes that money and time are often obstacles to people who have big ideas about making media and journalism processes better, so they have chosen 17 inventive projects to fund through their Prototype Fund program.

The $35,000 grant allows media creatives to fully develop their ideas over a six-month period and then demo the final product before their peers and Knight folks at the end of the ride. After glancing at the list, these projects stood out as significantly useful tools for journalists and digitally-native news organizations.

Louder – Based out of San Francisco, creator Colin Mutchler wants to go a step beyond sharing important content to social media. He’s testing Louder, a crowdsourced advertising platform that lets users donate small amounts of money in order to further advance the journalism they find most vital and share-worthy. Potentially, the “Make It Louder” button would allow readers to pay for more reach for a particular story, sort of how a “boost” on Facebook may direct more eyeballs to a post.

LibraryBox – There are 5 billion people on the planet without the Internet, meaning they lack necessary access to medical information, educational knowledge and up-to-date emergency-related news. That’s where LibraryBox comes in. The “box” is an open source and portable “digital file distribution tool based on inexpensive hardware” that is designed to make important information available to the 60 percent of the world who aren’t connected.

Minezy – This tool is being built to help journalists make sense of email archives, especially as they relate to business, political and social topics. Journalists utilizing Minezy would hopefully be able to break down “social relationships, hierarchical structures and topical importance from email archives.”

PressSecure – With the rise of social media and decline in press freedom across so many countries, the preservation of citizen journalism is of the utmost importance. PressSecure believes that and wants to figure out a way to safely and securely archive the work of concerned citizen reporters and photographers through a mobile app, all in the name of press freedom.

Tipsy – It’s not what it sounds like. The World Wide Web foundation knows there can be difficulties in the way of readers leaving news providers donations. Focusing specifically on the friction between consumers making small donations and big content providers, Tipsy is a software that would make it simpler for news websites to earn revenue through micropayments.

To see the full list of Prototype Fund projects (and they are all great), click here.

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