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A new site which will be dedicated to investigative, public-interest journalism in New Zealand is calling on the public to offer support to help get it "off the ground".

According to an introductory post, Journalism.org.nz is a "not-for-profit trust dedicated to supporting and building public-interest news, analysis, comment and debate", inspired by the model used by outlets such as ProPublica in the US.

Journalism.org.nz is now looking for "support from people who think it's important to have proper journalism in New Zealand", founding editor Bernard Hickey says in a video introducing Journalism.org.nz.

"We aim to gather a group of supporters able to fund, build and flesh out a community of journalists and the platform they need to report, analyse and publish the news that matters," he adds in the introductory post.

"That means investigative, probing, enterprising and explanatory journalism, rather than celebrity-driven churnalism and PR."

He adds in the video that the platform needs to be funded "from the ground up" and wants to include the public in its creation. "We're looking for trustees, people to help us out on the editorial board and most of all we'll be asking for your support."

The site, which is currently in a "very early version", is now looking for people interested in joining its editorial board and helping set its "editorial policies".

Hickey told Journalism.co.uk that while its "editorial priorities" have not yet been decided, the main topics it is likely to cover will include the environment, education, health, social welfare, business and the arts.

And rather than a paywall, its funding plans are "more likely to be crowdfunding" he added.

"We want this to be public-interest journalism available to the public, although contributing members will be offered discounted access to events and involvement in setting the editorial direction and strategy.

"We aim to raise funds to employ journalists, both full-time and part-time, to report, edit and sub-edit their own material and contributions from the public.

"We see an opportunity to use social media tools to both report on our communities and gather support from our communities."

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