Freelance platform Newsmodo starts meetings with UK publishers

Newsmodo, the new online platform designed to bring journalists and publishers together, is meeting with British news publishers this week ahead of its global launch.

Newsmodo: readies UK launch
Newsmodo: readies UK launch

The platform is designed for freelance journalists from around the world to sell news stories, photographs and video to publishers, while also providing a database to commissioning editors looking for freelance support.

The platform's founder, the Australian former TV news reporter Rakhal Ebeli, is in London this week and is understood to have meetings scheduled with people from the BBC, News International, Trinity Mirror and Daily Mail.

Although Ebeli envisages the website will be used primarily for news, the platform could also become a resource for advertisers, publishers or agencies looking for copywriters or people to write advertorials.

Newsmodo already has between 3,000 and 4,000 freelancers signed up and Ebeli said this could grow to 400,000 over the next three to four years.

After browsing freelancers’ profiles on the site freelancers will be able to either advertise commissions publicly so freelancers can apply to produce the work, or contact particularly relevant freelancers directly.

Ebeli said he came up with the idea when working as a journalist after seeing "how much content was being acquired externally" and developed the platform with backing from the Melbourne-based venture capitalist firm Oxygen Ventures.

Ebeli said: "There is nothing like what we’re doing out there. You can sell individual photographs but there is nothing that allows you to sell a pre-packaged story. I’ve been very excited by the response we have got so far and we are meeting some of the biggest publications in the world."

Newsmodo will take a commission from freelancers who sell their stories and charge publishers to advertise for work.

Ebeli said the charges would be released when the website goes live but that it would be a "lot less" than the 50% charged by existing photo-selling sites.

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