THINK TANK #5: Using Blockchain-Journalism to Reinvent Hyperlocal News Into a Community-Driven, Profitable Business (with Daniel Sieberg, Civil Media)

Goal of this Think Tank

"Skate to where the puck is going — not where it has been." -- Wayne Gretzky

Several weeks ago, hyperlocal news and journalism took yet another punch to the gut when billionaire businessman, Joe Ricketts, penned a letter to the journalists and staff he employed, informing them that the publications he's owned and operated for 10 years would be shutting down effective immediately. Gone in the blink of an eye were highly trafficked, much-loved hyperlocal news sites (DNAInfo, Gothamist, LA Weekly and others across the country), along with the jobs of journalists and news staff who dutifully ran the publications.

“DNAinfo is, at the end of the day, a business, and businesses need to be economically successful if they are to endure.” -- Joe Ricketts

How can a decentralized, blockchain platform solve the news industry's biggest problems including fighting fake news, making news more community-driven, supporting journalists as entrepreneurs, and making the industry profitable?

Hyperlocal news is struggling to survive (The Decimation of Local News in New York City), a sense of impending doom has gripped many journalists in the wake of DNAInfo/Gotham's shutdown (Everyone Should Fear What Happened to the Gothamist Sites), and even big, profitable digital media sites are reeling (2017 is a Depressing Year for Digital Media Companies), all the while, in the background, the battle against fake news rages on (Fighting Fake News Online Wins these Three Projects Accolades). Through the past several years of turmoil and uncertainty in the news industry, this much has become painfully clear:

One of the most difficult challenges of our era is that, thanks to the disruptive forces of technologies like the internet and mobile devices, we must completely reinvent the news distribution/revenue business in order for true journalism to survive.
Can we build a sustainable, trustworthy digital news model for the future that will be inclusive, equitable and profitable for all?  Disruptive technologies are decimating the hyperlocal news industry -- can disruptive technologies also save hyperlocal news?
Daniel Sieberg (cofounder, Civil)

JOIN US us for this informative Think Tank as we explore reinventing news through emerging technology with guest speaker Daniel Sieberg (co-Founder and Head of Journalism Operations at The Civil Media Company and former head of Google News Lab) who will present his startup, Civil (a blockchain-based, self-governing marketplace where citizens directly sponsor newsrooms and journalists collaboratively run their own publications).

Sieberg will explain why Civil is the solution to the news industry's most vexing problems. Attendees will then participate in an interactive discussion and group problem-solving exercises that will challenge our current ideas about news media and journalism.

A Decentralized-First Solution to Journalism

"At its core, Civil is a decentralized platform for news (across mobile-first web and app) using blockchain technology with a structure to better engage with an active community and ensure security across the network. It’s also an opportunity for entrepreneurial journalists to rally their peers and generate content directly for their audience — all while getting paid." -- Daniel Sieberg

Civil is nothing if not ambitious and innovative. Cofounded earlier this year by Matthew Iles and Daniel Sieberg, and funded by ConsenSys, Civil's blockchain Ethereum-based platform seeks to "spur journalism at the grassroots level and make it possible for people to sponsor journalism across areas like investigative reporting, local news and policy coverage while creating a marketplace for journalists, consumers and citizen reporters alike."

Additionally, the platform will "protect journalists against censorship and intellectual property disputes while substantially limiting misinformation through properly incentivized collaborative editing and fact-checking, increasing transparency and openness across the network." Translation: no fake news!

Civil's newsmaking platform and its CVL token sale will launch simultaneously in early 2018 with live newsrooms. Below is additional reading about Civil:

About Daniel Sieberg

Daniel Sieberg is Co-founder and head of journalism operations at The Civil Media Company (@join_civil) and author of The Digital Diet. Civil is radical new paradigm for self-sustaining journalism that's built on cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.

Previously he spent six years at Google and helped build the Google News Lab; he also served as the global head of training and development overseeing projects related to news partnerships on products including maps, search, VR, trends, data viz and more. He led an international team who trained journalists on how to use Google tools for newsgathering and aided in Google's efforts to develop media startups and entrepreneurship. He was also an official Google spokesperson for a variety of consumer initiatives around the world.

Emmy-nominated TV correspondent/writer whose work covering science and technology across four continents appeared for nearly 20 years across CBS News, CNN, ABC News, NBC News, MSNBC, BBC News, NPR, PBS, CNET, Discovery Channel, Bloomberg, Oprah.com, The Dr. Oz Show, Details, the Washington Post, and the Vancouver Sun. Daniel's website: www.danielsieberg.com / His book website: www.thedigitaldietbook.com / Twitter: @siebergd

 Event Agenda

  • 6pm - 6:20pm:  Sign In, networking, lite bites and beverages
  • 6:20pm - 6:30pm: Announcements, updates, speaker introduction
  • 6:30pm - 6:55pm: Daniel Sieberg presentation 7pm - 7:30pm: Interactive, problem-solving Think Tank 7:30pm - 7:45: Audience Q&A
  • 7:45pm - 8PM:  More mingling and then it's a wrap!

Awesome Media Partner

Start Time

6:00 pm

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Finish Time

8:00 pm

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Address

TBA

Event Participants