Perhaps the greatest surprise is how helpful the site is on days with fast-breaking news. We often find that some user has already created a mini-documentary about the bank or official or country that is suddenly in the spotlight. If the user’s content is good enough, we highlight it. If it’s not quite up to our standards, we can work with the user to develop it. If no user has yet created a mini-documentary, we only have to wait a bit. By the end of the day, someone will.
We now have a full-service news site. Users can find out what happened and they can quickly get our take on the news. They can also access a rich trove of narratives to place the news in context. They can even create their own minidocumentaries to reflect on what the news means. If they think we’re biased, they can make an informed, data-based argument. If they think we’ve missed something, they can tell us what it is and see if we bite. Journalism has never been stronger.

Now all we have to do is figure out how to make some money off of this thing.

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Adam Davidson is editorial director for NPR's Planet Money project and reports on business and economics for the network's national desk.