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Scoop "Operation Chrysalis" Frequently Answered Questions

Published: Wed 18 Feb 2015 11:50 AM
Scoop "Operation Chrysalis" Frequently Answered Questions
Operation Chrysalis Update


Scoop.co.nz is undergoing a transformation from a private business into a not-for-profit media organisation held for the benefit of all NZers. CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO SUPPORT THIS EFFORT
On 18 February 2014 Scoop.co.nz launched a crowd funding campaign for its "Operation Chrysalis" project via Pledgeme.co.nz. See the crowd funding page for details.
This page (which is referenced in the Crowd Funding description) is the repository for Frequently Asked Questions related to the crowd funding campaign and will be updated as new questions are answered. To submit a question email chrysalis@scoop.co.nz
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"Operation Chrysalis" - Frequently Asked Questions
CONTENTS
Question 1 : Who will own The New Scoop?
Question 2 : How will The New Scoop be governed?
Question 3 : Who are the parties who will be consulted about becoming guardians for the new Scoop?
Question 4 : What will guardianship look like?
Question 5 : Where will the new leadership team be found?
Question 6 : Why is a new leadership team needed?
Question 7 : What will the new business focus of Scoop be?
Question 8 : What will sustainability look like? How will you know when it has been achieved?
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Question : Who will own The New Scoop?
Answer : The legal frame work for the ownership model for The New Scoop is yet to be determined. There are a range of possibilities and Scoop will be taking legal advice to determine the best way to a) secure public ownership, b) protect the company from legal attack, c) provide a comfortable level of flexibility for the management of Scoop as a business and d) to maintain the ability to encourage financial and in-kind investment in Scoop. In recent years some interesting new models for structuring both news organisations and social enterprises have emerged. Scoop will be looking for a best-practice solution.
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Question : How will The New Scoop be governed?
Answer : This issue is also to be determined and relates to the first question. The publishing company will likely have a board which will appoint and editor and staff. We are also considering the idea of having another governance layer - that of guardians - who would represent the ultimate owners and play a role in the appointment of the board. It will be important however to ensure that the guardians are not in a position to unduly influence editorial freedom of the news organisation.
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Question : Who are the parties who will be consulted about becoming guardians for the new Scoop?
Answer : The role of guardian is intended to be representative of the groups who have an interest in Scoop performing its role as an independent news organisation. And groups who fit this description are invited to contact Scoop if they are interested in playing a guardian role. Scoop will be writing to representatives of a range of sectors to commence discussions about participation in a guardianship role for The New Scoop.
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Question : What will guardianship look like?
Answer : The Guardianship role will be defined in consultation with prospective guardians. It will likely involve a form of governance and oversight of Scoop's operations. Guardians would likely be consulted on board appointments, strategic direction and have an opportunity to suggest activity to the board. During the early years of The New Scoop the role of guardian will also be to serve as a link between the parties who have an interest in Scoop - i.e. its clients and contributors - and Scoop's board. It is also envisaged that like familial guardians, editorial guardians would perform a mentoring and support role for Scoop as it moves towards achieving sustainability.
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Question : Where will the new leadership team be found?
Answer : Following the Crowd Funding campaign Scoop will invite interested individuals to a day-long meeting to brief them on how Scoop works, discuss what it is looking for, what it needs and what the role of Social Entrepreneur at The New Scoop will look like. Anyone interested in coming to this meeting should express their interest by emailing chrysalis@scoop.co.nz
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Question : Why is a new leadership team needed?
Answer : After 16 years of operations the founders of Scoop feel it is time to pass on the creative flame of Scoop to some new - probably young - digital media talent. Whilst considering the idea of turning Scoop into a Social Enterprise Scoop's owners observed the growing interest in social entrepreneurship in New Zealand. While some of Scoop's existing team may decide to stay on, Scoop's co-founder and current editor Alastair Thompson has decided he would like to move into a role of arms-length mentor and advisor rather than stay at the coal-face of publishing and business development.
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Question : What will the new business focus of Scoop be?
Answer : Scoop's new business focus will be on subscription products rather than advertising. Recently online advertising markets have become an ocean in which minnows can no longer swim. For this reason Scoop has a plan to make its long term sustainability immune to risks associated with advertising markets.
Scoops subscription products will be developed to provide more value to paying clients and through the implementation of a commercial use licensing policy - an invisible paywall - Scoop hopes to significantly broaden the base of its subscription business.
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Question : What will sustainability look like? How will you know when it has been achieved?
Answer : Scoop has for several years operated too close to the break-even line for comfort. Sustainability going forward requires the risk of income shortfalls to be eliminated by achieving a subscription income base roughly twice as big as that the company currently enjoys. It is hoped that this objective can be achieved over the coming 12 months.
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Please submit any further questions you would like answered to chrysalis@scoop.co.nz.


Scoop.co.nz is undergoing a transformation from a private business into a not-for-profit media organisation held for the benefit of all NZers. CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO SUPPORT THIS EFFORT

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