This is a testing time for news organisations. The industry is being challenged by new competition, changing habits and the disruption of revenue models. Our businesses are facing unprecedented levels of scrutiny and pressure, individually and collectively.
As a global supplier of news, we work with outlets of all sizes around the world and pick up on our customers’ concerns. And, from our special place in the news ecosystem, we are seeing partnerships becoming increasingly valuable and important across the industry.
The trend for collaboration has become evident in recent years – whether the tech companies supporting global journalism, American news organisations collaborating on election results in the National Election Pool or the BBC partnering with local news outlets in the UK.
Of course, even as we are all buffeted by change, we’ll continue to compete vigorously. It is in journalists’ nature to compete. It drives exclusives, innovation and experimentation. But we can also come together where it makes sense.
That is the philosophy behind our own digital platform, Reuters Connect, and our latest move, announced today, to invite even more partners to join us.
Some background; launched in 2017, Reuters Connect was designed to be a ‘one stop shop’ for modern-day publishing’. It began with around three million pieces of content. It now contains more than 15 million pieces of premium content in 16 languages - spanning every multimedia format including video, text, pictures and graphics.
Importantly, this content is generated no only by our own newsroom but, increasingly, by a diverse, global range of content partners. This includes many of the world’s biggest and most respected media outlets, alongside smaller operations focused on new types of content like UGC.
The next step was thinking beyond simply supplying content. Connect was designed for journalists by journalists, so we understand newsrooms. As our client base has expanded and become more diverse - with global news giants rubbing shoulders with ‘sole trader’ outfits - the demand for services beyond content – in areas such as planning and productivity - became more and more apparent.
So today, we are taking another step forward in our collaboration, as we announce the first three partners in what we are calling our ‘productivity suite’: here
The ambition here is to provide a range of production apps from external partners that offer creation, production and editing services – alongside all the content already available.
The first of the partners we have announced are: Stringr - a video marketplace offering custom footage from both professional and amateur videographers; Amper Music, which provides AI-generated, rights-cleared soundtracks and music; and InVideo, an online video editing tool enabling creation and editing of video-on-demand. Their services will be available on Connect later this year and will be joined by more productivity partners as we build on our plans.
We hope these tools will help all our clients – especially smaller users who don’t already have access to these resources – manage their output as we build a product that supports ‘end to end’ news production. As with all our developments, we will listen to their reaction and I’m sure we will learn, adapt and iterate as we go.
Ultimately, we want to provide a platform that brings the industry together – to buy, sell and yes, ‘connect’! Today’s announcement is part of a move to help us, our customers and our partners thrive in a changing – and challenging - media landscape. Here’s to the next chapter…
Sue Brooks is Managing Director, Reuters Product and Agency
[Reuters PR Blog Post]