Louisiana Journalism Fund – Frequently Asked Questions2024-04-02T19:04:42+00:00


Why does a media company owned by a wealthy family need donations?2024-03-21T18:29:34+00:00

Our owners have made a sizable commitment to journalism across Louisiana. In an era where newsrooms are shrinking and hedge fund owned media companies are squeezing out every last dollar in lieu of supporting community journalism, our owners have leaned in to the idea that Louisiana deserves better. It’s why our newsroom has more than doubled in the past five years to a size that’s larger than many other regional newsrooms in markets 2-3x our size. But accountability journalism is no longer a one-way street. It requires buy-in from the community at large. The type of journalism that’s produced by our fundraising efforts is not a profitable endeavor nor is it a sustainable business model without donor support.

Why are you raising money through a non-profit? Aren’t you a business?2024-03-20T20:50:56+00:00

Daily newspapers across the U.S. are struggling due to drops in print circulation and advertising and decades of making our content free online. The Times-Picayune and The Advocate are lucky to be locally owned (and not owned by an out-of-state hedge fund), but we’re far from immune to these business pressures.

The newspaper is also a key civic institution, and we’re seeking community support to ensure that a critical public-service component of our mission — investigative journalism — is sustainable. Newspaper investigations can change lives, but they often take months or even years, which means they aren’t always cost-effective from a pure business standpoint. We’ve heard from some readers and members of the community that they are interested in providing financial support for these endeavors.

Are you planning to become a non-profit?2024-03-20T20:51:12+00:00

No, not exactly. We are still a business funded primarily through print and digital advertising and subscriptions. But that business model is evolving. We expect that over time, community and philanthropic funding, partnerships and other new revenue sources could help support some of the newspaper’s operations (It is unlikely to ever be a large portion).

Our larger goal is to build community awareness and sustainable support for journalism as an institution that is essential to the health of the community, much like other enterprises that operate for social benefit: arts organizations, hospitals, universities and other groups.

Who will provide funding, and how will you disclose your donors?2024-03-20T20:51:51+00:00

We are currently seeking grants and other contributions from national foundations, community foundations, private philanthropies and individual donors interested in supporting quality local investigative journalism. We plan to publish the names of donors to this website.

Will funders make decisions on what to investigate?2024-03-20T20:52:15+00:00

No. The editorial decisions made by editors and reporters in our newsroom will not be guided by donors. Other news organizations that have embraced community funding have been rigorous in maintaining total independence for news and coverage decisions. We will do the same. Our editorial policy regarding this fund is also on our website.

Journalism derives much of its impact because of its independence from outside influences; our newspaper has a reputation as a trusted news source that we guard dearly.

How can I contribute?2024-03-25T16:55:09+00:00

All donations to the Louisiana Journalism Fund are tax-deductible and will be administered by regional nonprofits in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lafayette and Shreveport-Bossier. Donations can be made here.

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