What we do

OUR MISSION

The Land is a local, nonprofit news organization that reports on Cleveland’s neighborhoods. Through in-depth solutions journalism, we aim to foster accountability, inform the community, and inspire people to take action.

WHAT WE DO

In 2022, The Land will: 

  • Inform the community through high-quality reporting about government, community and economic development, the environment and health; 
  • Foster civic engagement in Cleveland neighborhoods by giving people the tools and resources for taking action;  
  • Elevate community voices with news coverage that reflects the diverse communities we serve; and
  • Collaborate with other media to strengthen Cleveland’s media ecosystem and help ensure equitable access to information for all. 

We’ll use the following approaches to achieve these goals:

On-the-ground reporting

  1. We are dedicated to strengthening our city by publishing balanced, well-researched news.
  2. We are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion in our newsroom and our coverage.
  3. We focus on accountability and solutions journalism.

Civic engagement

  1. Our stories are in-depth and offer resources for getting involved.
  2. We report on solutions that help people to improve their lives and neighborhoods. 
  3. With reporting that reaches out to a multitude of residents and community leaders, we help to foster civic engagement.

Elevate community voices

  1. Through our citizen journalism program, we train and pay Cleveland residents to research and write stories about their neighborhoods. 
  2. Our on-the-ground reporting examines how issues affecting Northeast Ohio impact people’s lives. 
  3. Through community engagement, we elevate marginalized voices such as communities of color, low-income people, and LGBTQ+ communities that are often not seen and heard in traditional media. 

Collaboration

  1. We work with the Northeast Ohio Solutions Journalism Collaborative (NEOSOJO) on stories about how marginalized communities are recovering from Covid-19.
  2. We encourage other media to “steal our stories” as long as they credit The Land.
  3. We share stories from other media organizations across the city.

DIVERSITY AND EQUITY

Truth

Truth is the foundation of all great journalism, but truth in news is not simply repeating facts and quotes and reinforcing existing systems and power structures. We commit to delivering stories that incorporate the highest standards of journalism through the use of in-depth reporting, data, diverse perspectives, human-centered storytelling, and exhaustive sourcing. Our goal is to develop long-term community relationships, and to pursue stories that provide insight and establish shared truth in public decision-making. 

Community

We believe that Cleveland has the resources to provide opportunity and well-being for all its people, regardless of age, race, income, gender, sexual orientation, disability, nationality, immigration status and any other factors. We recognize that our community is made up of many diverse and interconnected communities and cultures. In our journalism, we seek to establish healthy community dialogue, to examine solutions that solve systemic problems, and to cover the issues that matter the most to all of us.

Equity

By embracing the value of equity, we commit to elevating the voices of the people most impacted by decisions and policies,we strive to reach audiences in vulnerable communities with journalism that empowers and inspires them, and we aim to ensure that our board of directors, staff and freelance writers reflect the diversity of the community. We recognize that media coverage has a natural tendency to prioritize vocal, powerful, and organized interests, so we work to ensure that our coverage represents balanced, diverse, and equitable perspectives.

POLICIES

Editorial independence policy

We subscribe to standards of editorial independence adopted by the Institute for Nonprofit News:

Our organization retains full authority over editorial content to protect the best journalistic and business interests of our organization. We maintain a firewall between news coverage decisions and sources of all revenue. Acceptance of financial support does not constitute implied or actual endorsement of donors or their products, services or opinions.

We accept gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals and organizations for the general support of our activities, but our news judgments are made independently and not on the basis of donor support.

Our organization may consider donations to support the coverage of particular topics, but our organization maintains editorial control of the coverage. We will cede no right of review or influence of editorial content, nor of unauthorized distribution of editorial content.

Our organization will make public all donors who give a total of $5,000 or more per year. We will accept anonymous donations for general support only if it is clear that sufficient safeguards have been put into place that the expenditure of that donation is made independently by our organization and in compliance with INN’s Membership Standards.

Donor & Financial Transparency

We are committed to transparency in every aspect of funding our organization.

Accepting financial support does not mean we endorse donors or their products, services or opinions.

We accept gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals, organizations and foundations to help with our general operations, coverage of specific topics and special projects. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that operates as a public trust, we do not pay certain taxes. We may receive funds from standard government programs offered to nonprofits or similar businesses.

Our news judgments are made independently—not based on or influenced by donors or any revenue source. We do not give supporters the rights to assign, review or edit content.

We make public all revenue sources and donors who give $5,000 or more per year. As a news nonprofit, we avoid accepting charitable donations from government entities, political parties, elected officials or candidates seeking public office. We will not accept donations from sources who, deemed by our board of directors, present a conflict of interest with our work or compromise our independence.

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