New resource tracks digital-born news orgs in Canada

A new database provides an insight into the almost 150 English-language digital-born journalism organizations in Canada since 2000.

This dataset accounts for closures and transitions, capturing the dynamic nature of the industry.

Digital-born journalism organizations, often also referred to as journalism start-ups, offer a valuable lens to think about journalism as they are generally launched in response to a gap or corrective in the media environment.

Developed over four years under the leadership of Professors Alfred Hermida and Mary Lynn Young, the initiative provides a comprehensive examination of digital-born entities in English, spanning commercial, non-profit, and charitable sectors.

Structures of journalism

The database is organized by media entity, recognizing that some will have a range of publications. It only includes English-language organizations, so it does not include French-language or minority-language entities. And the entries are all digital-born, so the database excludes print or broadcast startups.

The aim of this project is to map the digital journalism space and investigate what journalism capacities are being created, repaired or transformed at a time when Canada’s liberal, largely commercial media system is showing signs of market failure.

Accessible through an interactive map and directory, the database is designed to facilitate academic research, offering insights into audience reach, launch dates, and founder details.

Academics, researchers, and industry observers seeking to engage with this resource are invited to request a copy.

The project is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation, and the School of Journalism, Writing, and Media at UBC.

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