Support from Craig Newmark Philanthropies will provide a special version of API’s advanced Metrics for News app free to 60 publishers.

The American Press Institute today announced it received a grant of $176,400 from Craig Newmark Philanthropies to help news organizations more effectively cover the 2020 elections. The grant will enable API to build special elections-focused dashboards in its Metrics for News application and to make a focused version of those dashboards available for free to up to 60 newsrooms starting in July. Interested newsrooms, who are not already Metrics for News users, can click here to apply.

The new dashboards are designed to help newsrooms inform their editorial strategies, track the success of their coverage and identify opportunities to best serve audiences with information they need and can trust in upcoming elections. All existing Metrics for News partners will have access to these dashboards, in addition to the new limited users. Metrics for News has worked with more than 130 newsrooms to refine and reimagine editorial strategies over the last five years.

The customizable dashboard will help newsrooms understand how audiences are interacting with their elections coverage.

“The news media has never faced a bigger challenge than today, covering a generationally critical election amid the pandemic,” said Tom Rosenstiel, executive director of API. “This grant from Craig Newmark Philanthropies means a large number of newsrooms will have a deeper understanding of how their communities are responding to that coverage.”

API is organizing and supporting several different initiatives to help news organizations improve and innovate their elections coverage to better serve their communities. The grant complements existing support from Craig Newmark Philanthropies that allowed API to build and coordinate the Trusted Elections Network, a combination of newsroom leaders, civic organizations, academic institutions and elections and media experts who are working to address misinformation and other threats to secure, trusted elections this year. Members of the Trusted Elections Network will be eligible for the special dashboard in Metrics for News, as will other newsrooms across the country.

These dashboards will be available — along with coaching and support from API’s Metrics for News team — at no cost for six months for up to 60 selected newsrooms. API will provide training, coaching calls and resources to help newsrooms use metrics to easily identify audience needs and develop data-informed strategies aimed at growing and deepening engagement. All existing Metrics for News partners will also have access to these election-focused dashboards, in addition to other advanced features that help with deeper data analysis.

Among the sort of questions the dashboards can help answer:

  • Which stories about the upcoming elections are connecting most with the community, including new users?
  • Are stories about absentee ballots and mail-in voting driving more engagement than stories about the candidates?
  • Is certain kinds of reporting, such as “service journalism” stories, engaging certain audiences and not others?

Metrics for News is a project of the American Press Institute. It is a web-based application that moves publishers beyond page views. The highly customizable tool blends key metrics newsrooms care about into single engagement scores, provides access to funnel analytics, targets specific audiences, and surfaces data by newsroom priorities. The app includes dashboards designed for specific newsroom roles — from staffer to senior manager — to simplify analytics, automate insights and answer important audience questions. For more information, contact

About the American Press Institute

The American Press Institute advances an innovative and sustainable news industry by helping publishers understand and engage audiences, grow revenue, improve public-service journalism, and succeed at organizational change. It is a national 501(c)3 nonprofit educational organization affiliated with the News Media Alliance. Its funding comes from several sources, including other philanthropic organizations.

About Craig Newmark Philanthropies

Craig Newmark Philanthropies was created by craigslist founder Craig Newmark to support and connect people and drive broad civic engagement. It works to advance grassroots organizations that are getting stuff done in areas that include trustworthy journalism & the information ecosystem, voter protection, gender diversity in technology, and veterans & military families. For more information, please visit:

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