What Happened When 4 Small Publishers Moved to WordPress?

The Local Media Association is a trade group that focuses on the business side of local media. They try to help newspapers, TV stations, and radio stations grow their bottom line.

They’ve just put out a detailed report explaining what happened when several Black-owned local media outlets moved to WordPress and Newspack. This list shows the publishers involved in the project. Check out the history behind some of these organizations!

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Why Are Local News Publishers Growing in 2022?

Since early in 2022, I’ve been blogging here on KinshiPress about the explosion in local news publishers. Initially that was driven by a gut-feeling that something exciting is in the early, formative stages. These publishers are mostly non-profit, mission-driven, and powered by WordPress.

There’s now data to back that up: The Institute for Non-Profit News is reporting strong growth for local news startups.

This growth is happening, but why now? Why didn’t it happen 10 or 15 years ago? Many of the tools and motivations that these publishers are using also existed back then.

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Baltimore Beat Launches as a WordPress Publisher in Baltimore

Back in May, we covered the upcoming launch of Baltimore Beat as a Black-led, Black-controlled nonprofit newspaper. The site launched this week.

You can read the launch post from Lisa Snowden, the newspaper’s editor:

We wanted to tell stories that reflected the fact that Baltimore City’s residents are more than 60% Black. We wanted to give Black writers the opportunities to tell their own stories.

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elPeriódico is a WordPress Publisher Fighting Censorship in Guatemala

elPeriódico is a daily newspaper in Guatemala that often reports on corruption in the country’s government. The paper’s motto translates to, “Informative scoops and rigorous and deep journalistic investigations always.”

The paper was founded in 1996 by José Rubén Zamora. You can read about Zamora’s career on Wikipedia, but it’s safe to say that he’s a incredibly respect and brave journalist. Over the years, Zamora has been attacked, beaten, kidnapped, and held hostage. The Guatemalan government has tried almost everything they can think of to censor Zamora. This week, he was arrested on apparently false charges of money laundering. Voice of America has details on the case.

Despite the arrest, elPeriódico continues to report daily in print and on their WordPress website.

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FloridaPolitics.com is an Independent WordPress-Based Political Publisher

FloridaPolitics.com broke the news this week that the FBI was searching Donald Trump’s house.

Peter Schorsch is the website’s publisher and he broke the news on Twitter. This led to some positive stories about the website, but honestly it’s far from the most interesting thing about FloridaPolitics.com. The news about Trump would have broken anyway, and Schorsch was honest enough to admit: “TBH, Im not a strong enough reporter to hunt this down”.

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