The News Project, according to CEO Merrill Brown, was founded to address some of the biggest concerns in journalism, namely, the high costs if launching and operating news sites.
Brown is a former journalist, journalism executive as well as an educator who has also been the founding editor in chief of MNSBC.com. In early 2019, he announced that The News Project had raised an investment of six-figures from WordPress VIP, and is now launching with its first customer, CALmatters, which is known to offer analyses and news on politics in California.
According to Brown and Miguel Ferrer, the product lead of The News Project, the company provides news business in a box. Simply put, The News Project has developed a new publishing platform with a number of different partners and will offer content management and hosting from WordPress VIP. It will also offer website development with help from 10up, reader engagement tools from Piano, design from Charming Robot as well as ads by Google Ad Manager.
News organisation will be able to access all these things by paying a $25,000 fee to become a part of the platform, followed a monthly subscription fee as well.
The new CALmatters website will have a fresher look, along with templates built to support sophisticated article formats like feature stories. Brown also said that these engagement and design tools would enable the company to support a variety of businesses models and forms of reader engagement.