A non-profit organization in the state of Maine is attempting to raise $15 million to purchase the state’s largest newspaper group and move the industry to a new kind of of revenue model.
The “Maine Journalism Foundation” says it’s new, non-profit organization is determined to preserve and nurture Maine’s local news.
This may be the future of local news.
You can read their story here, with links to their organization at the end.
The local news crisis is real. Newspapers nationwide are threatened by an eroding business model, leading increasingly to an evaporation of local information and a troubling, well-documented negative impact on civic engagement and discourse. Maine has been well-served by a combination of locally owned newspapers, a statewide public media network, and volunteerism driving journalism in the unlikeliest places. But the ecosystem is fragile.
The Maine Journalism Foundation (MaineJF) believes that healthy communities must have trusted local news sources to hold the powerful to account and have the backs of all Mainers. We are not alone. Across the country, non-profit journalism models – in Baltimore, Chicago, New Jersey Hills, Salt Lake City, to name a few – continue to gain steam and philanthropic support. They stand in hopeful contrast to markets where new private-equity owners decimate news gathering resources and prioritize profits over people.
As Masthead Maine pursues its next chapter of ownership, MaineJF is moving quickly to assemble a group of local donors and, as its first foray into non-profit news, acquire Maine’s largest media group. MaineJF is registered with the state as a non-profit organization and is applying to the Internal Revenue Service for 501c3 status. We plan to operate owned media as mission-based entities, while also supporting other local news outlets throughout Maine.
We invite you to join us.