Operation Chrysalis Update #8
16 Days Of Scoop Update : Dear Scoop Crowd - Thankyou!
FROM: Scoop Editor and Publisher Alastair Thompson on behalf of the Scoop.co.nz team
Dear Scoop Crowd,
It appears there are quite a lot of us now! You lot are a truly fantastic crowd.
That said, this is just the beginning of the next chapter of the life of the news network which we call Scoop.co.nz, and
we will always welcome more members of the Scoop Crowd. This is what this post is primarily about: a prompt to help grow
our Scoop Crowd still further (As well as updating you on the progress of our "16 Days of Scoop" campaign.)
If you are not yet a member of Scoop and are receiving this then please consider joining before 11pm tomorrow (1st July)
night. See the details here >> It costs just $16, that's $1 for each year of Scoop's service to informing New Zealand's democracy
This evening, as I publish this, we are just 15 days into our "16 days of Scoop" campaign and we now have 142
"Foundation Members" of Scoop.
To those of you who have in the past 15 days joined us as members, purchased licences, discussed purchasing licences,
tweeted our campaigns, shared them on facebook etc.: Thankyou. You have been marvellous. The collective positive
response that we have received from you over the past four months has been amazing.
What we are undertaking here at Scoop.co.nz is no easy task, but the fact that we have so much enthusiastic support
certainly makes it easier.
It strongly suggests that there is a very solid group of New Zealanders who really do care about what is happening to
the future of news and journalism here in Godzone- and care enough to contribute in money and action towards finding a
And now two months after we pivoted Scoop's business strategy towards deep crowd and user engagement
it appears we have proven not one, but two new sources of revenue for the monetisation of Scoop.co.nz's publishing
2 Surveys Show NZers Highly Value Public Access To News
"Do you believe that access to news is a public right?"
In the latest survey 99% of Action Station members
Scoop's earlier reader survey
got a similar result, 98% said yes [81% "definitely" yes. 2 respondents said they didn't know].
This also cheers us greatly.
This and the very generous support Scoop has received via membership signups, commercially in sales of licences, in
words of encouragement and as donations and membership subscriptions has convinced us that our mission to build a new kind of news company for the digital age, a news company for the people
, is one which is we can expect to continue to grow.
The 16 Days Of Scoop Are Very Nearly Up - So One Final Request For Your Assistance
The 16 Days of Scoop come to an end at 11pm tomorrow night - 1st July.
We would be keen for as many members as possible to have joined Scoop by that point. We are currently on 140. 200 seems
achievable - but only if a bunch of you who receive or read this message decide to take action in the next 24 hours.
We therefore encourage you once again to:
- Encourage your friends and colleagues to do likewise;
Why Is It Called An Ethical Paywall?
Finally I would like to share something with you.
What follows provides a glimpse inside the work we are doing to explain our "Ethical Paywall" to its target audience.
The institutions, businesses and organisations who we are asking to pay an annual fee for "Commercial" or "Professional"
use rights to access Scoop.co.nz and its content.
At the end (headed "Scoop's Ethical Paywall and Government’s Better Public Services") is a summary description of Scoop's Ethical Paywall which was formulated to explain the benefits of Scoop's "Ethical
Paywall" innovation to Government users, decision makers and policy makers in particular. It is still a work in progress
and we would welcome feedback on this discussion to firstname.lastname@example.org
Scoop's "Ethical" Paywall approach, is so named as a nod in the direction of the Wikipedia definition of Ethical & Fair Trade
Ethical trade is the assumption of responsibility of retailers, brands, and suppliers to improve the working conditions
of the disadvantaged people in its supply chains.
Scoop's Ethical (a.k.a. Invisible) paywall addresses the disadvantages of two groups in the 21st century "information
business" supply chain.
1/ the public who consume the news, i.e. the readers and users of Scoop's content;
2/ the workers who produce and curate news content, i.e. Journalists, Editors and Publishers;
We all agree that society as a whole benefits if the public is informed so as to enable them to participate in the
decision making processes which regulate their lives, provide them with consensual collective security and protect their
rights and freedoms.
Meanwhile society as a whole also benefits when a certain kind of information professional - free professional ethical
journalists - are able to practice their craft independently of influence. The activity of "free speech" expressed in
courageous journalism is one of the greatest protectors of the rule of law within all free and democratic nations.
At present both of these objectives are being very seriously undermined by market forces. The advertising revenue models
of the internet in 2015 do not incentivise the production of professional ethical public interest journalism, rather
they incentivise the production of click bait, propaganda and the use of cat videos as a substitute to news.
Scoop's Ethical Paywall model on the other hand requires institutions to consider whether they value the use of specific
sources of information for their work - and if they do creates an obligation on them to acknowledge that value in a
monetary form. It is a simple but very powerful idea.
As a Publisher Scoop.co.nz's focus then moves from publishing information for the purposes of providing a vector for
advertising material ( i.e. content which large numbers of people will click to read) to publishing information which is
important to. and provides a high level of value to, its institutional users in particular.
Anyway, hereafter following is the Scoop Team's latest - hopefully clear and succinct explanation - of what this Ethical
Paywall stuff is all about and why it matters to Government and Local Government in particular.
Scoop Editor & Publisher
Monday, 12 January 2015.
Scoop's Ethical Paywall and Government’s Better Public Services
Scoop’s solution to the problem of incentivising the market provision of quality - free to the public journalism - in a
time of great disruption to the news business.
Scoop’s Ethical Paywall provides a solution to the problem that commercial licensing for media products and "lawful" use
of information content now pose for central and local Government.
This problem arises from the revenue disruption experienced by all media businesses in the last five years. While we all
recognise that access to information promotes accountability and builds civic capacity, which leads to better decision-making and a more cohesive society
, the reality is that public access to information from the media is becoming limited and expensive.
Scoop's response to revenue disruption is to launch an "Ethical Paywall”. This is a new kind of creative commons
licensing - free to the public but requiring business, government and civil society's "professional news users" to be
licensed and pay a modest annual fee. As a publisher Scoop owns copyright to its collection and has the ability to levy
a commercial license fee for access to it, and also to waive this for the public.
This business strategy is complementary to central Government's open digital Government objectives. And we have been
licensing clients and champions of free public access, including the NZ Parliament, Government agencies, law firms,
Information services and libraries.
In contrast, other online publishers are introducing digital paywalls as a means to support declining revenue. Where the "reuse" of material is licensed (i.e. the end user has
permission to reuse the content), the fees for licensing can be hefty. The "lawful use of content" obtained from these
publishers is typically under contract limited to a specified number of users and specific uses.
Scoop’s mission has always been to "be an agent for positive change" in New Zealand, by promoting the dissemination of ideas and the accountability of decision making through publication
of a wide range of political, business sector and industry-specific information. Both the introduction of digital
paywalls and of commercial fees for information inhibit free public access to information and pose a threat to the
Better Public Services objectives of Government. Scoop’s new Ethical Paywall is a practical response to the very real
problem for all media businesses but still aligns with these objectives.