Re-committing to local news

First off, we want to say thank you for being creators on News Break. Local news and information is our passion and mission at News Break, and we appreciate you joining us on this exciting journey to revitalize local news. It is no simple task, and we cannot do it alone. As we near our six-month mark for the Creator Program, we want to clarify a few things to help us all grow in the best way possible for the next six months, six years and more!

Connecting and informing local communities

The Creator Program’s mission is to enable local creators to inform their communities on News Break, in order to help citizens live safer, more vibrant, and more connected lives. By empowering local journalists and content creators through our Creator Program, we aim to support and revive local journalism and news ecosystems. The goal is that content on News Break reflects the diversity, interests and needs of local communities across the country.

News Break users come to our platform to learn more about their local community, whether that’s through news updates, profiles of individuals and businesses, historical context, things to do, or more. Readers come to us because over the last two decades, newsrooms producing high-quality local news have been declining. People deeply care about staying connected to and informed about their local communities, and we’re one of the few platforms that still prioritizes local content.

The future for local creators

You, the creators in the Creator Program, are local experts who know your local communities better than anyone else. News Break users can read national news and opinions anywhere on the internet, but they’re missing somebody who can educate and inspire their local lives! Our goal is to help you find your own dedicated, local readership from our users, who look to you specifically as their local expert in whatever your niche is. Many communities across the country are missing a high-quality, local resource and you can step in to fill that void.

The value of local content

In order to properly distribute scarce, high-quality, and locally-relevant content, we needed a way to measure these attributes. This is where CV Score comes in. We realize that CV Score might still be a bit new and confusing, and we apologize for the confusion it might have caused. It’s not completely perfect, but we will be using it moving forward to signify content we believe will deeply engage our users. There are a few things we want to clarify about CV Scores:

  • Categories, topics, types of stories: Local stories are valued more than national stories, but beyond that the category and types of story matter too. We want stories that are unique, creative, grounded in facts and useful to our readers. This means that entertainment pieces, relationship advice, opinions, etc. will receive a lower CV Score.
  • Impressions and distribution: You might be used to thinking in terms of impressions, especially if you’ve been writing national content. The CV Score prioritizes local articles, but local articles with high scores might still see lower impressions than some national articles with low scores. However, as we move forward, you can expect that articles with lower CV scores will receive fewer and fewer impressions, while articles with higher CV scores will be prioritized in distribution. You should also consider local page views as more valuable for building a loyal readership and for monetization.
  • Word count: The ideal word count for a News Break article is 600+ words. While we will accept articles with fewer than 600 words, articles must be at least 250 words. We also account for word count in CV Scores, so articles with fewer words will see lower scores, and therefore, could receive less pay.

Celebrating original, local reporting

Moving forward, we’re excited to see more original, local reporting from creators. Original reporting with context and insight is the best way to provide value and build a following on News Break. Good writing and reporting has the power to help people understand and connect with the world they are living in. Don’t feel restricted to these formats, but here are some examples of the types of original stories we love from News Break creators:

Updating our Creator Content Guidelines

We have updated our content policy and requirements to reflect our revived effort to support high-quality, local journalism. These new policies will take place April 1, 2021. Here are some key updates:

  • All content must include facts and information. This means fiction (including science fiction), song lyrics, poems (unless the poem or song is newsworthy), and other types of posts without facts or information will not be accepted. Also, this is not the place to purely rant, post a journal entry about your day or air out all of your grievances.
  • All content must include attributions where necessary. All information that is not accepted fact, first-person experience or personal expertise must be attributed. Not properly citing and crediting your sources of information can be considered plagiarism and a serious violation. If possible, you should link to these sources when you mention them. When in doubt, always attribute.
  • All content needs a headline. Every article needs a factually correct headline that is directly related to the content in the article. The headline should be formatted in AP Style, where only the first word and proper nouns are capitalized (everything else should be lowercase). Please do not use ALL CAPS.
  • At least one image. All articles must include at least one image that is relevant to the content. All multimedia must be owned by you or you must have obtained permission to use the media if the multimedia is not free for everyone to use without any restrictions. Every image, including images taken by the creator, must include a credit to the source. Images on our platform, at a minimum, need to be 201 x 201 pixels.
  • We do not allow purely biased content. We acknowledge that there is a fine line between biased news and satire or opinion. If you do post opinionated content, it should still be grounded in facts and information and contribute to an informed public debate

You can click to read our full, updated Creator Content Policy and Creator Content Requirements.

More resources

We know that this is a lot to take in, and you might have more questions. We’d like to re-introduce two useful resources where you can find answers in the future: our Help Center and our Creator Profile. The Help Center should be your one-stop shop for support questions like our values and principles, editorial best practices, our definition of “local”, finding your audience, and FAQ. Our Creator Profile will provide tips and tricks on how to succeed on News Break, spotlight different campaigns we’re running, and profile outstanding creators.

Lastly, a huge thank you to all the talented writers and creators in our Creator Program. We’ve loved reading your stories and seeing them resonate with our readers. Moving forward, we’re excited to provide meaningful local content and information to more communities around the country and hope you’ll continue to grow with us!

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