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Fragile Finance: mapping the revenue stream of exiled and restricted media

September 30, 2015
Mark Lochrie

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Authors: Clare Cook
For journalists promoting the free flow of information in repressive or restrictive media environments, the issue of financial sustainability is complex. Both media in exile (out-of-country news outlets feeding independent information into the country of origin) and news outlets in restrictive news environments (in-country providing counter-information) exist in flawed market situations and often rely on grant funding. This is the first academic study of the revenue streams of these media, providing scarce empirical data and a typology of funding structures of these media. This article examines three main revenue categories: grant funding, earned income and donations. The major factors influencing revenue streams compared to online media startups in open markets are discussed. The article finds significant barriers to revenue creation and identifies the need for alternative approaches, particularly partnerships, to promote economic resilience for media under threat.

Where: International Communication Gazette
Publication date: 16/09/2015