Knight Center
Knight Center


Knight Center publishes Membership Puzzle Project report, in Spanish and Portuguese, on member-driven movements

A unique report that provides lessons from member-driven movements so that news media can improve their own financial models is now available to more journalists, media executives and scholars after its publication in Spanish and Portuguese.

“Membership in New & Beyond: What Media Can Learn from Other Member-Driven Movements,” can be downloaded for free in Spanish and Portuguese, thanks to the work of the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas and the Membership Puzzle Project.

The report, previously published in English, is available from the Knight Center’s Digital Library. It was co-authored by research director at the Membership Puzzle Project, Emily Goligoski, and operation collaboration expert Matt Thompson.

Goligoski, Thompson and a team of freelance researchers looked to organizations in the membership space for ideas and practices that could be adopted by news organizations. In the report, they pull from churches, a meditation center, the Burning Man festival and more.

The authors clearly delineate “membership” from “subscription,” as the former involves participation, joining a cause, or the creation of a “social contract” or “value proposition.”

The report is written at a time when long-standing and startup news organizations alike are facing great challenges in terms of financial sustainability and survival. To answer how membership might be able to help, the report looks at and is divided into three big questions: 1) Why do members join?, 2) What do members do? and 3) How do successful member-driven movements grow?

The five key takeaways involve focusing on members’ values, connecting them to a bigger purpose, providing a solution to current problems, giving a range of options for support and growing at a strategic pace.

Goligoski first presented the report at the International Symposium on Online Journalism (ISOJ), hosted by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas, on April 12. Download it today for free from the Knight Center’s Digital Library.


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