opinion journalism

Clarify your opinion product’s mission to boost audience financial support

Creators of The Flip Side spent the past year researching and speaking with engineers, designers, academics and community moderators about how best to design an online community where meaningful discussions can take place.

How local opinion sections can transform into public forums: Insights from public deliberation

When we avoid triggering the worst in human nature, we have a better chance of tapping into the best, such as human creativity and imagination.

Join us to reimagine local opinion journalism

The American Press Institute is continuing to help news organizations reimagine local opinion journalism to promote  healthier civic discourse and to better understand its role in news business sustainability.

Trust and expectations

Gen Z and Millennials hold traditional expectations of the press and have some positive views of the media Concerns about misinformation and the role of the press in spreading it may contribute to a negative perception of the media as a whole among Gen Z and Millennials. However, the survey also finds Gen Z and […]

How might journalists help communities overcome division in our digital world?

Fractured, distrustful, polarized. Online and off, it’s easy to see why many of us use these words to describe our current moment. Most news organizations seek to inform and provide a common set of facts that can help their communities solve problems. But in today’s disrupted media environment, newsrooms have also wrestled with questions about […]

These news orgs are building beats from reader donations

Asking audiences to make a donation to support journalism may not have been something many local news organizations — apart from public media newsrooms, that is — had experience (or comfort) doing. The coronavirus pandemic helped change that. Thrown into severe financial distress at the onset of the pandemic, some news organizations started asking for […]

How to stop doing work that underperforms: Advice from 4 newsrooms

One of the biggest challenges we’ve heard from the newsrooms we work with is that there’s not enough time. Journalism has always been a high-stress job, but it’s become increasingly so as budgets have tightened across the industry and newsrooms have tried to keep up the pace and volume of work with fewer resources. But […]

How a small-town paper is applying conflict mediation skills to its opinion content

Editor’s Note: The American Press Institute is exploring how news organizations are reimagining opinion journalism to support constructive conversations in their communities. This essay by Julie Hart, digital editor for The Laconia Daily Sun in Laconia, New Hampshire, follows a series of 2019 essays and summit. *** Our small, community newspaper in rural New Hampshire has always stuck […]

How The Tennessean’s opinion section is working to combat polarization

For years, columnists and analysts have observed and lamented the growing polarity in American politics. Too often, they act like bystanders, pointing out problems but rarely offering more than platitudes in response to societal woes. We have talked about echo chambers, red and blue voters, and the effects of social media in exacerbating that divide. […]

Why the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel replaced opinion content with solutions journalism

Like so many other great ideas, this one began over a beer. It was the fall of 2017, and my editor George Stanley and I were in a cocktail lounge in Washington, D.C., during a break at that year’s ASNE convention. Ten years of cutbacks in our newsroom had forced a reckoning: The last writer […]