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Mortgage Revolution donations already hard at work supporting community funded reporting

Andrew T Berman
May 11, 2010

Not even full week from Mortgage Revolution San Francisco and some of the donations raised are already hard at work helping breath back some life into true journalism. Spot.Us received a $5,000 donation to use as is wishes. They can be to fund articles if it so desired, however founder, David Cohn didn't feel comfortable with that. Instead, they put the money to funding a new method of advertising. Before I go into what this "mad scientist" (yet very powerful) way of advertising, let me try to explain what Spot.Us is. Spot.Us figured out a way to remove the friction from the process of getting news stories to readers. They found the shortest distance from point A (the reader) to point B (the author of an article). Their process puts the power into the reader. Decisions about what articles get funded are made by you and I (the community)! That's right, you and I decide if we want to see articles like How green are cruise ship tourism dollars? or How the MLS is manipulated to make sales look better than they really are.  The community makes small donations based on articles we want to see. So it turns out that $5000 they received from Mortgage Revolution to use in the most bizarre advertising experiment I have ever seen. It's called "community-centered advertising." I call it bizarre because there is nothing like it that you or I have ever seen.  You can read more about this new form of interactive advertising on the The Poynter Institute blog here.