Being small, making big Change: Building the Investigative Media from Scratch



The investigative journalism is the most complex form of journalism. Due to being financially consuming, it was gradually expelled from many larger media organizations. Can investigative journalism survive or even thrive in the new environment of digital, crowd-founded small media running as non-profits? The good news is that critical journalism focused on pubic interest can make a real change in the society, no matter how small it started.

Taja Topolovec is a co-founder and CEO at Pod črto ("The Bottom Line"), the only independent media in Slovenia, focusing on investigative reporting, data journalism and in-depth stories. The Pod črto media officially started by just two (very dedicated) individuals in September 2014, who managed to develop systematic covering of complex and demanding topics including crime, corruption, misuse of European funds as well as economic development and entrepreneurship, social, and environmental issues. From the start their missions was to build the media that comprehensively explains the pressing issues in the society, as well as finding the ways to address them and, furthermore, press the authorities who are responsible for change-making.

In her talk Taja Topolovec will share the lessons from building investigative media from scratch. In her session she is going to discuss the process of founding the independent media, what can you achieve with a micro team, how to maintain your independance while getting donation support from your readers and donors, what are the obstacles on your way, how to build trust, connect with the communities, turn your readers into supporters and how to position yourself within the existing media industry.