Technology has made life more convenient. Yet, left unchecked and unquestioned, the digital technology revolution could threaten the future of our democracy.

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  • Article

    First Amendment vitals: Taking Gen Z’s pulse on free expression and inclusion

    May 13, 2019 by Evette Alexander

    First Amendment vitals: Taking Gen Z’s pulse on free expression and inclusion

    Millennials have left the nest of higher education and entered the workforce. Undergraduates on campus now hail from the tip of the next age cohort known as Generation Z.  They are the true digital natives born into an always-on world.  The very oldest was four on 9/11, seven when Facebook launched, 10 when the iPhone came on the scene and 19 – freshly eligible to vote – in the 2016 election.

  • Article

    Local equals trust: A call to help rebuild local news

    March 31, 2019 by Karen Rundlet

    Local equals trust: A call to help rebuild local news

    Since Knight Foundation announced a $300 million initiative in February to help rebuild local news, we’ve received an exuberant response from funders, civic leaders and journalists. They, too, are seeking to bolster local reporting in their communities because they understand the important role that journalism plays in our democracy in informing communities and holding the powerful accountable.

  • Article

    Announcing the Winners of the AI and the News Open Challenge

    March 12, 2019 by Tim Hwang

    Announcing the Winners of the AI and the News Open Challenge

    We’ve been absolutely blown away by the interest and excitement around our AI and the News Open Challenge. After several months and the efforts of a small army of amazing reviewers to sift through the 500+ applications we received, we’re excited to finally announce the winners of the challenge today. 

  • Article

    Knight Media Forum: The opportunity is now to build the future of local news

    March 6, 2019 by Marika Lynch

    Knight Media Forum: The opportunity is now to build the future of local news

    We have never had a bigger opportunity – or greater need – to build the future of local news. That was at the heart of discussions at the Knight Media Forum, a gathering of leading journalism funders and practitioners held last week in Miami. 

  • Article

    Eight ways to make international news local

    February 1, 2019 by Chana R. Schoenberger

    Eight ways to make international news local

    How can local journalists make the connection between the issues they report on and international events? “You have to find the connection between international affairs and people’s lives and build out from that,” said CNN GPS host and Washington Post columnist Fareed Zakaria.

  • Article

    The price of progress: How “digital pollution” is poisoning democracy and what we can do about it

    January 22, 2019 by Sam Gill

    The price of progress: How “digital pollution” is poisoning democracy and what we can do about it

    The warning lights are flashing. The challenges of the digital age are posing fundamental challenges to our democracy. To capture the benefits of digitization, without enduring intolerable costs, we suggest it’s time for a new paradigm—one similar to how we treat other forms of pollution from industrial progress.

  • Article

    Health care journalism is critical: How local news helps

    December 24, 2018 by Rose Hoban

    Health care journalism is critical: How local news helps

    In 2011, I came to the stark realization that I was one of the last reporters left in North Carolina focused on covering health care. It shocked me then — and continues to shock me now — that even as our medical system grows more complicated and political, many news outlets have eliminated their health reporters.

  • Article

    How local news builds trust and disinfects corruption

    December 20, 2018 by Lindsey Millar

    How local news builds trust and disinfects corruption

    As journalists, we understand that robust local journalism requires time and resources. It demands patience and a sense of where to look for a story.

  • Article

    How young people, the future guardians of our laws and rights, feel about free speech

    December 6, 2018 by Olivier Kamanda

    How young people, the future guardians of our laws and rights, feel about free speech

    Photo by wiredforlego on Flickr.

    Olivier Kamanda is director for learning and impact strategy at Knight Foundation. 


    High school may be a tumultuous time, but it’s also when many of us first start to define not only who we are but also our beliefs about our community and our country. Understanding high school student views on the First Amendment, and, in particular, the essential freedoms of free press and free expression, is then vital to anticipating how future generations may interpret and support these rights.

  • Article

    Seven ways high-school student views on free speech are changing

    December 5, 2018 by Knight Foundation

    Seven ways high-school student views on free speech are changing

    As concerns over free speech, declining trust in news and the impact of misinformation surge, a new report explores how high-school students’ attitudes about the First Amendment are evolving and what that means for the future of our democracy.

  • Article

    Why influence matters in the spread of misinformation

    November 20, 2018 by Becca Lewis

    Why influence matters in the spread of misinformation

    Photo by Edward Musiak on Flickr.

    Becca Lewis is a Ph.D student in communications working at Data & Society. Below she writes about findings from a recent Knight report that explored how misinformation spread during the 2016 presidential election. 

    If you start paying attention to the issue of online disinformation, you will start to hear a lot about the role of “influence.” Most notably, media outlets have done widespread reporting on Russia’s so-called “influence campaigns,” meant to impact U.S. elections. But “influence” is an important online phenomenon more generally. If you use Instagram, for example, you almost certainly have encountered “brand influencers,” who build devoted audiences and then attempt to sell them products and services. Influence, then, is a crucial phenomenon online: it means having a powerful voice and using that voice to have an impact, whether political or commercial.

  • Article

    Building a movement for trusted nonprofit journalism

    November 1, 2018 by Karen Rundlet

    Building a movement for trusted nonprofit journalism

    Photo credit: Sabrina Sanchez.

    Karen Rundlet is director for journalism at Knight Foundation. Below she writes about NewsMatch, the annual national matching gifts campaign for nonprofit news organizations, which is accepting donations today through Dec. 31. 

    This is the third year for NewsMatch, the national matching-gift campaign that supports nonprofit organizations across the country. The campaign’s participants, all of them nonprofit newsrooms, produce rigorous journalism in service of the public. It is in all of our interests to support them, now more than ever. As misinformation runs rampant, and trust in media fall to all-time lows, these organizations are delivering the investigative, accountability and civic reporting that highlight pressing community issues and hold our leaders in check. While the tools of information creation and delivery have changed dramatically in the last decade, there are some constants: quality journalism remains a powerful tool for change and a free and independent press is vital to a healthy democracy.

  • Article

    Embracing digital, some TV stations are filling gaps in local news

    October 22, 2018 by Katti Gray

    Embracing digital, some TV stations are filling gaps in local news

    “The State of Local News“ forum at the Paley Center. Photo by Karen Rundlet.

    Even as local newspapers steadily close, the audiences and profits for some local TV stations are growing. That’s in part because local stations are tailoring news packaging and delivery to the preferences of younger and other digital-first news consumers, said newsroom leaders at this week’s “The State of Local News“ forum in New York City.