When Civil's token economy launches in October, newsrooms that run on Civil will be able to directly license AP content into their articles. The AP is also exploring how blockchain-based technology can unlock a more efficient method for setting and enforcing licensing rights. For more, see Techcrunch's and Digiday's coverage of this news.
Journalists create content to tell the stories that need to be told. Currently, many journalists and news organizations struggle to efficiently control and monetize their content. Journalists often see their work republished without permission, citation or, most significantly, compensation. Nobody understands this issue better than the AP, the largest news licensing service in the world.
And now, they're part of the Civil economy. We're committed to promoting a better way forward, with an emphasis on journalists capturing the full extent of the value they create. This initiative is a major step towards that goal, and an exciting moment with Civil's official launch just over a month away (and the token sale beginning in just over two weeks!).
And there's more on the horizon: we'll be announcing additional partnerships in the coming weeks.
Several weeks ago, we congratulated Block Club Chicago on surpassing one million unique views — an impressive feat for the then-month-old publication. We'd be remiss, then, to not commend its team for reaching an even bigger milestone, not even three months after its launch: it has officially passed three million views!
Kudos to Block Club Chicago for fast becoming the go-to source for Chicago neighborhood news, and for pioneering a new approach for sustainable, local journalism.
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We're focused on building a community of people who care about journalism above all. For many, Civil will be their first foray into blockchain technology. We're committed to making the process as seamless as possible.
In terms of painfully obvious statements, this one should hover somewhere between “Don't invade Russia during the winter” and “the Cleveland Browns are probably not going to win the Super Bowl this year.” And yet, most people still don't recognize the dire business circumstances most local news organizations face — which has resulted in the information vacuum that's being clogged by instances like the one described above.
Communities have demonstrated a far greater likelihood to trust local news outlets than their national or international counterparts, and yet, this need persists. Why aren't more local journalism outlets springing up left and right?
With few exceptions, local news outlets are controlled by distant, third party owners. The local journalism economy is dominated by media holding companies and hedge funds, who see newspapers as “distressed assets” from which they can increase their own profit margins — not trustworthy sources of critical information that informs and activates communities. With few exceptions, these owners are not interested in funding the creation of journalism; that would eat into their profit margins.
This is why we feel so strongly about building a new economy for journalism. We want to create a model that enables journalists to control their own destinies again. We don't think that profit-driven owners are the best stewards for journalism; we think that's a role best suited for an informed, passionate community that sees journalism as a vital public good.