Irish journalist Lyra McKee is using Beacon, a crowdfunding service for writers, to raise money to finish a book in which she investigates the last weeks of a local politician in Belfast named Robert Bradford, who was killed in 1981. Her campaign promises backers a chapter of her book every month until it’s published.
"Very few news outlets are funding investigative reporting right now," McKee tells Poynter in an email. "I feel like investigative journalism has been driven out of the newsroom because editors want quick results. The economic turmoil of the industry means they're answering to accountants now rather than their readers."
Why not try for a grant? I asked. "The problem with grants is that everyone's chasing them," McKee replied. "This is the thing that really bugs me about our industry: everyone's looking for the handout but very few are thinking about business models and how we're going to make the craft sustainable." Through crowdfunding, she writes, "I can offer people something in return." (more...)