April 11, 2012

Announcing an Investigative News YouTube Channel from CIR, INN

The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) announced today the launch of a new investigative news channel on YouTube. CIR will be producing and curating content for the channel, and the Investigative News Network will provide business and development support.

INN will be working with CIR to promote the channel and to engage the audience through social media and online chats.

The investigative news channel is made possible by a generous grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Read the full press release:

For Immediate Release

April 11, 2012
Lisa Cohen, 310-395-2544, lisa@lisacohen.org
Andrew Sherry, 305-908-2677, sherry@knightfoundation.org

The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) to Launch Investigative News Channel on YouTube

Funded by Knight Foundation, Investigative News Channel to Bring Deep Reporting to New Audiences

CIR to Produce and Curate the ChannelInvestigative News Network to Build the Business Among its Members

Berkeley, Calif. – The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) announced today it will launch a new investigative news channel on YouTube that will be a hub of investigative journalism, with $800,000 in support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

CIR, the non-profit investigative reporting organization that has produced numerous award-winning investigations, will curate the YouTube channel, which is expected to launch in July 2012. Journalists will be trained in audience engagement and other best practices for online video. The Investigative News Network (INN) will also be responsible for working with its member organizations to leverage the channel to reach new audiences and increase the amount of earned revenue to subsidize their public interest journalism.

"This collaboration is poised to bring investigative reporting authoritatively onto the social web,” said Michael Maness, vice president for media innovation and journalism at Knight Foundation, which promotes informed and engaged communities. “We hope it will engage audiences and expand public appetite for visual story telling.”

Robert J. Rosenthal, executive director of CIR said, “One of the goals of this partnership will be to raise the profile and visibility of high impact story telling through video. We hope this initiative generates revenue that supports the work of nonprofit organizations and independent filmmakers everywhere. Collaborative efforts like this are no longer the future of journalism, they are today's reality.”

The investigative news channel will feature videos from major broadcasters and independent producers, both national and global, non-profit and for-profit.  Contributors to the channel will include NPR, ABC News, The New York Times, CIR, Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, Center for Public Integrity, American University Investigative Workshop, Independent Television Service, as well as other members of the Investigative News Network. CIR plans to add additional contributors and will seek submissions from freelance video journalists and independent filmmakers from around the globe.

CIR and INN will work together to promote the channel and to engage users in the content through social media and online chats.

"We are very excited at the opportunity to expand the size of the audience for public interest journalism through the YouTube platform," said Kevin Davis, CEO & Executive Director of the Investigative News Network, a 501(c)(3) organization that represents the interests of 60 nonprofit, nonpartisan newsrooms in North America. "We believe that this channel can increase the impact of accountability journalism in a way that both engages and informs."

Sharon Tiller, director of digital media for CIR, said, "The Knight grant gives CIR and INN the crucial start-up funding to launch and curate a new YouTube Channel that will be a dynamic hub for high quality, high impact investigative videos stories from top news producers but also a magnet for emerging talent from all over the world."

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. The foundation believes that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit KnightFoundation.org.

About the Center for Investigative Reporting

Founded in 1977, the Center for Investigative Reporting is the nation's oldest nonprofit investigative news organization, producing unique, high-quality reporting that has impact and is relevant to people's lives. CIR’s newest venture, California Watch, is the largest investigative team in the state. The organization’s stories appear in hundreds of news outlets including NPR News, PBS Frontline, PBS NEWSHOUR, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Sacramento Bee, The Daily Beast, MinnPost and American Public Media’s Marketplace. CIR stories have received numerous journalism awards including the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton, George Polk Award, Emmy Award, Investigative Reporters and Editors Award and the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. Its reports have sparked state and federal hearings and legislation, United Nations resolutions, public interest lawsuits and changes in corporate policies. For more information, please visit www.centerforinvestigativereporting.org and www.californiawatch.org.