Today the fine organizers of the Online News Association Conference released the preliminary schedule for the ONA 2011 Conference in Boston.  They’ve also extended the early-bird registration deadline to give potential attendees time to check out the programming. As someone who has attended ONA conferences for the past two years, I’ve found immense value in meeting people in journalism and technology. These are a few of the sessions that stand out to me so far, and why I think they’re important.

Entrepreneuring 3.0 Workshop

Schedule description: Local news entrepreneurs need to know more than just how to launch a news startup these days. You need to know when to add satellite sites, how to expand your distribution pipeline and how to bring in new kinds of revenue. J-Lab returns for another daylong workshop that will focus on staying power, growth and expansion, ad networks, content partnerships and even the new ethical minefields in local news ecosystems.

Why it’s important: We’ve heard a lot about entrepreneurial journalism — over and over again. This workshop goes beyond the act of starting a company and delvs into sustaining that company. The focus on experimentation and potential failure has been great up to this point for getting new ideas up and running, but if we want to create a journalistic future that works, we need to create companies that don’t go under after a few years. Read more