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The Med City Beat has established itself as a trusted source for news in Rochester — now it's time to expand the website's coverage.
The Med City Beat has established itself as a trusted source for news in Rochester — now it's time to expand the website's coverage.
96 backers pledged $10,030 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$10,030

96

The Med City Beat has only been in operation for about six months, but has quickly established itself a trustworthy — and occasionally offbeat — source for news in Rochester.

With just a laptop and several hundred cups of coffee, I have been able to build a hyperlocal news website that reaches more than 10,000 unique visitors each week. 

The best part is that I'm creating this traffic by consistently sharing quality information and resources with the community — not by clickbaiting or offering cheap gimmicks.

Impressed? Don't be. The coverage, both in volume and quality, has increased significantly since the website launched in November, but there is still a lot of room for improvement. 

Here are three areas that I would like to focus on:

  • DMC video series: The Rochester Story Project videos are great marketing tools but they don't help tell the story of a changing Rochester. I want to talk with the people on the ground — police officers, nurses and small business owners  — about their hopes and fears as the initiative moves into the implementation phase.
  • In-depth interviews: Sometimes you need more than just a soundbite to understand an issue, so I will work with local production companies to produce more extended interviews with community leaders and advocates.
  • Community forum: Rochester needs an online platform for smart, productive dialogue on key local issues. This will be a place to debate ideas, share events and report suspicious activity. 

None of the projects can be done alone. Each will require participation from Rochester's talented pool of writers, photographers, editors and graphic artists.

Completing these projects will also require the long-term viability of the Med City Beat — that's why half the money raised in the campaign will go toward operating expenses. 

A fully-funded campaign will guarantee:

  • Continued operation (through December 2015)
  • Four-part DMC documentary series (first installment in August)
  • 12 extended interviews (two per month)

I will also develop a community forum, hire volunteer writers and work toward long-term financial sustainability. My goal is to double the amount of original content on the website by the end of summer.

But most importantly, I will continue to use the Med City Beat as a tool for breaking stories, sharing community events and promoting a smarter, healthier Rochester.

Final notes:

  • This is an all-or-nothing campaign, meaning the aforementioned projects and incentives are dependent on raising the full $10K. No one will be charged for a pledge unless the goal is reached.
  • Third-party contractors will be chosen through a fair and transparent process. Only bids from local production companies and artists will be considered.
  • Readers will have the opportunity for input when it comes to choosing guests (and questions) for extended interviews.
  • If the funding goal is reached, a launch party will be held on July 10 for contributors of $75 or more. The evening will include live music, free appetizers and craft drinks. More information is available here.
  • On a less serious note: The Med City Beat pledges to leave future green screen editing (see the above video) to the pros. Trying to do everything yourself only gets you so far in life.

So if you appreciate what I'm doing with the Med City Beat — and you want even more original content — consider supporting this project today!

Risks and challenges

Social media is constantly altering the way people consume news. Major shifts in the industry used to happened every couple decades but are now happening every couple months. It's important that the Med City Beat continues to keep up with emerging trends when it comes to telling stories, distributing content and promoting advertisers.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    A shout out on Facebook for supporting local journalism (let me know if you would like to remain anonymous)

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    Shout out + an official Med City Beat sticker

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    5 backers
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    Pledge US$ 30 or more About US$ 30

    Shout out + an official Med City Beat coffee mug

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    16 backers
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    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    All the above + two tickets to an exclusive launch party in mid-June with live music, appetizers and craft drink samples

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    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    All the above + two tickets to an exclusive launch party July 10 at the new Forager Brewery. The evening will include live music, appetizers and craft drink samples.

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    Limited 47 backers
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    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    All the above + one week to advertise a business, event or idea on the Med City Beat. You can also donate the space to a nonprofit (with permission).

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    17 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 300 or more About US$ 300

    All the above + listed as a founding contributor on the website's homepage

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    1 backer
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    All the above + lunch at Forager Brewery with former Minnesota football star Darrell Thompson and Med City Beat founder Sean Baker.

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    Advertising on all video content outlined in the proposal + two seats with Darrell + four tickets to the launch party + name on the homepage

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Funding period

- (20 days)