The Funded Project:
Develop and test watchdog journalism products that can have value to both lower and middle income news consumers and share that research with newsrooms.
In Their Own Words:
We are consistently trying to develop news products to serve audiences with high information needs and high cognitive loads. This is largely a news product design problem and affects news consumers with acute info needs and those who are overwhelmed with too much information.
Watchdog reporting in particular is not designed for use by most low-income news consumers. Typically, this work is a longform explanation of a problem. Our audience has little time to spare and is already familiar with the problem we are covering. Our audience needs more info about how to navigate problems and who they should hold accountable. We want to develop a news product that is versatile, informative, and reported — somewhere between an SMS message, a brochure, an infographic and a longform story. We have reporting on three of these about 90 percent complete.
We want to learn more about what is likely to serve our audience best by A/B testing these rigorously for content and ease of sharing. In the best case scenario, we would learn some valuable UX lessons for low-income news consumers that can be shared more widely with newsrooms that are not able to invest in that research.