News entrepreneur boot camp seeks to launch 15 journalism ventures

I’m back from 5 days in Los Angeles at the Knight Digital Media Center News Entrepreneur Boot Camp, held at the University of Southern California under the auspices of USC Annenberg. Long ago I lived in San Francisco for a year and never felt an earthquake, but for the occasion of our five days in L. A. there were two “moderate” quakes, 4.7 and 4.1 on the Richter scale.

More significantly, if not of earthshaking import, the boot camp met the expectations of participants to help them shape their visions into plausible business ventures. As both a participant and an observer, my feeling was that the proceedings lent credence to the idea that going forward, successful journalism can happen not just in large organizations but in small, bootstrapped operations that target well-identified local, regional and national needs.

The businesses being formulated by the campers ranged from hyperlocal news sites to local, regional and national niche sites on politics, economic development, technology, entertainment, health, education and consumer issues. Several of them underwent major revisions in their focus or funding options during the camp.

Continue reading this post at Nieman Journalism Lab.