The New Humanitarian (TNH) is to make most of its articles free to republish under the Creative Commons licence.
Visitors to the website will see a "republish this article" link at the top of certain stories from 2023 onwards, which can be republished under certain guidelines. The link provides an HTML version of the article's content and an embeddable tracking pixel which must both be used.
"Ultimately it’s a mission-driven decision, not a commercial one," explains Isabelle Roughol, director of audience and revenue development, TNH, in an email to Journalism.co.uk.
The news website is an independent, non-profit organisation focusing on humanitarian stories from conflict zones, disasters and other crises. It is backed by donors ultimately interested in impact, regardless of where the journalism it funds is being published.
"What matters to our business model is that people read our journalism, not that they read it on our website."
Roughol adds that its articles have always been open to republishing, though that has taken the form of ad hoc partnerships. The new features have been built by the product team to make the republishing process quicker and easier on both sides. It also can track how far and wide its journalism travels, which is essential for measuring impact.
It is not the only news website operating with this model. The Conversation is a news website which publishes contributions from academics at universities which pay a membership fee to the organisation. Its articles are also free to republish under the Creative Commons licence with many of the same requirements.
In a recent podcast with Journalism.co.uk, commissioning editor Avery Anapol explained that universities are primarily concerned with the impact of its research. They are more satisfied with their memberships to The Conversation if their stories reach a wider, and more specialised, audience.
In the case of TNH, the mission is to amplify stories from the corners of the world that do not get high media coverage. But it can also reach a more diverse audience group through republishing. TNH's core audience is very engaged professionals working in relevant sectors. Republishing to other news websites promises different audiences.
Most stories dated 2023 and onwards will be free to republish. Exceptions might be co-produced stories with partners. Those that cannot will not have a "republish this article" link. To republish stories dated prior to 2023, contact the team first.
"We fulfil our mission when our journalism reaches as large an audience as possible and maybe someone who had barely heard about Myanmar or Mali gets to learn about it," Roughol continues.
"Our journalists cover with unparalleled expertise pressing issues in which we all have a stake - conflict, climate change, forced displacement – and the policies behind them. That work must be widely read. If that happens off-platform for us, that's okay."
It is not simply open season on TNH's work, however. Guidelines state that republished articles must be credited to all original authors, include a backlink to the original with a specific tagline and a provided description of the TNH.
Editors can reasonably rewrite the headline and edit for brevity and house style, so long as the integrity of the story is maintained. Rewriting or restructuring the story is not allowed. Translating to other languages is allowed if a provided accuracy disclaimer is published.
Stories also cannot be republished behind a paywall, resold or reshared to other third-party entities or used for any commercial activities. Editors must only use the text and media within the HTML version, as anything else is not licenced to share.
TNH also asks that the organisation is tagged in any social media posts sharing republished pieces.