My citJ business models package published by Poynter

By Steve Outing

Before I left my job as a senior editor at the Poynter Institute at the end of February, I turned in a package of articles about business models for “citizen journalism.” has now published it: “The Business of Supporting Citizen Journalism.”

CitJThe reason I left Poynter was to work full-time on a citizen-media startup company I founded devoted to adventure/participant sports, the Enthusiast Group.

When I turned in the draft of this package, there was no mention of EG; I felt that I didn’t want it to appear to be a promotion for my new company. But editors at Poynter felt that explaining to readers that I was moving into citizen media as an entrepreneur was important, for disclosure reasons and perhaps because it would help enhance my credibility in writing on this topic. So I added a single paragraph at the bottom of the intro piece reporting on my new endeavor.

Alas, if the first user comment on the package is an indication, the perception may be that this ends up being a promotion for EG. Chris Shea wrote in the comments area attached to the package: “This is essentially an ad for Outing’s new company. Is this appropriate content for Poynter?”

So let me respond here: For I think more than the last year, I was charged by Poynter with doing reporting and research on the field of citizen media; I was, I think it’s fair to say, the most knowledgeable person in the Poynter organization on citJ. That process led me to developing the concept behind EG, which I thought was an opportunity I had to try.

I suppose there was no perfect way to transition from doing writing and research on citJ to actually practicing it without someone thinking I’m taking advantage of the situation. Still, I hope this package of articles provides some insights to others who are practicing or thinking of practicing citJ.

If you take the time to read through the package, the only mention you’ll see of EG is that brief addendum to the intro piece. All the other reporting is about other companies’ and individuals’ efforts in finding ways to fund citizen media.

Author: Steve Outing Steve Outing is a Boulder, Colorado-based media futurist, digital-news innovator, consultant, journalist, and educator. ... Need assistance with media-company future strategy? Get in touch with Steve!

3 Responses to "My citJ business models package published by Poynter"

  1. Bill Mitchell
    Bill Mitchell 11 years ago .Reply

    Just wanted to vouch for Steve’s version of events above. After reading what seemed to me to be Steve’s very thorough state-of-the-biz account of citizen journalism, I tried to put myself in the shoes of readers and ask whether Steve’s own CitJ venture would be relevant. Seemed to me the answer was overwhelmingly yes, so I asked Steve to add the graf that has prompted the objection. I’m not sure how this casts the package as “an ad for Outing’s new company,” but I’d welcome further discussion about that and other issues and questions raised by his good work on the CitJ topic.

  2. Paul Bradshaw
    Paul Bradshaw 11 years ago .Reply

    The article still stands as a hugely useful contribution to a field where so many people are trying to find their feet. I’ve posted about it on my Online Journalism Blog at (was that advertising?)

  3. […] Allerdings hat Outing das Problem, dass er selber bei einer Firma aktiv ist, die die Finanzierung von CJ übernimmt. Dazu äußert er sich übrigens auch in seinem Blog: […]

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