OpenNews: One week to apply, our newsroom partners make the case

Becoming a Knight-Mozilla Fellow means being embedded in some of the best news organizations in the world. That means you won’t just be in the room when news breaks, you’ll be creating compelling new ways to break it. You won’t just have colleagues to learn from, but peers excited to learn from you too. And you won’t just be another set of hands in the newsroom—you’ll be experimenting, trying new things, and tackling major newsroom projects.

The deadline to apply to become a 2015 Fellow is August 16, just a week away, and the newsrooms that are partnering with us—the Guardian, NPR, the Washington Post, the New York Times, Vox Media, the Center for Investigative Reporting, and La Nacion in Buenos Aires—have articulated the opportunities fellows will have if they’re embedded with them. At the Guardian in London, incoming Executive Editor of Digital Aron Pilhofer sees “the unique vantage point” of a Knight-Mozilla Fellow:

You will be fully part of the London newsroom, able to collaborate with reporters, editors, graphics editors, interactive developers, designers and more. You’ll also have the ability to collaborate with business-side teams as well, including the Guardian’s world class digital development, analytics and product teams.

But as a Knight-Mozilla Fellow, your goal isn’t just to improve the Guardian; it’s to improve journalism as a whole, with one of the world’s most important newsrooms as your laboratory.


NPR wants a fellow to join their unique hybrid Visuals team in Washington, D.C. For Brian Boyer, the NPR Visuals editor, the fellow will be a teammate—plus:

You’ll be our teammate: making stuff with us, learning what we’ve learned, teaching us what you know and what you’re learning elsewhere during your fellowship year.


The Washington Post and the New York Times are teaming up with Mozilla and OpenNews to build a next-generation community platform for news. As the Washington Post’s Greg Barber writes, they’re bringing two Knight-Mozilla fellows into the New York-based team as well:

One thing we know for sure is that we want Knight-Mozilla Fellows with us, doing what they do best: experimenting and breaking boundaries. We want fellows to push the work our core team is doing in new directions, to think of things we haven’t, to be independent operators within this deeply collaborative project.


Vox Media sees their fellow as someone that can bridge their seven media sites and help “open source the elements that would be beneficial to the larger journalism community.” Writes Chief Product Officer Trei Brundrett:

We have benefited greatly from open source as we have aggressively built a media company from scratch. Now we’re eager to give back as an active member of the OpenNews community. This year at our hack week, VAX, we kicked off the process by making it easier for our teams to share our work with the open news community and releasing some code, but there is still much left to do. We want you to help us shape that commitment.


The Center for Investigative Reporting is looking for someone who “loves visual data” to help bolster their dataviz work. Writes Jennifer LaFleur, CIR’s Senior Editor for Data Journalism:

We work with many graphic designers and have featured their incredible work. But we’ve never had anyone dedicated to making our reporting and data analysis really shine. When it comes to news apps, we’ve been pretty good at faking it, but we know that we can really up our game.

We need to be able to tell readers things they don’t already know and are actually worth knowing. We need your help to communicate that information more effectively. We’ll challenge you to help users understand complex concepts and help us understand the best way to distill millions of relevant records into a compelling presentation.


In Buenos Aires, La Nacion’s data team is “motivated by the possibility to produce changes with our work, using technology to open data, especially in a country where there is no transparency law and with high levels of corruption,” explains data manager Momi Peralta Ramos. Their fellow would join their team in opening datasets and making them accessible to the Argentinian people. As their whole team explains in a subtitled video:


The opportunity to work with these incredible news organizations is yours. If you love to code and want to spend 10 months deeply immersed in the problem-sets of journalism, then apply now.