About our project

In addition to reading about our initiative on this website, here is a one-page NewsQ Brief (April 2020).

Principles and Recommendations

Panels. In its effort to support broad constructive engagement on the question of news quality, the NewsQ Initiative hosts a series of panels. NewsQ Panels are composed of journalists, journalism experts, and technologists, and review specific cases of news ranking and recommendation to understand whether generalizable guidance or principles regarding quality journalism—interpretable both by algorithms and by journalists—might emerge.

Data collections

NewsQ collects two types of information: potential “signals” of quality related to journalism and examples of feed results from platform news products.

API. As of 2020, the NewsQ Database contains over 100 units of information on over 12,000 news and information sites. Some of these units of information may be potential “signals” of quality journalism. This database, which is mostly focused on English-language US readership, is currently open for testing purposes to a limited number of invited researchers and participants.

Feed results. Our project has collected specific results from news feeds across major platform news products by Google, Facebook, Twitter, Apple, and Microsoft for an initial qualitative review during our 2020 panels. The dataset, gathered across dates from February to June 2020, provides an illustrative rather than systematically sampled view of possible results. In addition to screenshots of news feed results, the results are accessible in an Airtable with additional contextual information about each of the top five articles, including the article URL.


News ranking prototypes. Code and example datasets from winning contents of the NewsQ NewsRank for Social Good Hackathon can be found at Devpost.

News within online information networks. This gap analysis on vaccine safety information on English Wikipedia began in 2020 and will be further developed in 2021, as well as analyzed for its handling of news sources.

Reference Materials

Reading Library

It’s a work in progress, but we are cleaning and curating our Zotero-powered library of relevant reading materials if you are interested in browsing. Suggestions for additions welcome.

What we’re reading

The latest from our library.

Schudson, Michael. “Is Journalism a Profession? Objectivity 1.0, Objectivity 2.0 and Beyond.” In Why Journalism Still Matters, 41–67. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press, 2018. [...]

Mosley, Tonya. “Predictions for Journalism 2020: The Neutrality vs. Objectivity Game Ends.” Nieman Lab (blog), 2019. [...]

Kennedy, Dan. “A Newly Published Set of Indexes Tracks Media Ownership in the U.S.” Media Nation (blog), May 14, 2021. [...]

“All the News That’s Fit to Click | Princeton University Press.” Accessed May 18, 2021. [...]

Helberger, Natali. “On the Democratic Role of News Recommenders.” Digital Journalism 7, no. 8 (September 14, 2019): 993–1012. [...]

Johnson, Thomas J., and James D. Kelly. “Have New Media Editors Abandoned the Old Media Ideals? The Journalistic Values of Online Newspaper Editors.” New Jersey Journal of Communication 11, no.… [...]

Institute for Nonprofit News. “An Open Letter to Substack.” Medium (blog), April 19, 2021. [...]

Investigative Reporters & Editors. “Tipsheet Search | Investigative Reporters & Editors.” Accessed May 7, 2021. [...]

Local Media Association. “About | Local Media Association.” Accessed May 7, 2021. [...]

Trusting News. “Start Earning Trust,” November 14, 2018. [...]

Lichterman, Joseph. “How The Lenfest Local Lab @ The Inquirer Launches Hyperlocal Newsletters.” Lenfest Institute for Journalism (blog), April 9, 2021. [...]

Heyward, Andrew. “A New Way to Cover Underrepresented Communities.” Knight-Cronkite News Lab (blog), April 8, 2021. [...]

Lewis, Seth C., and Oscar Westlund. “Actors, Actants, Audiences, and Activities in Cross-Media News Work: A Matrix and a Research Agenda.” Digital Journalism 3, no. 1 (January 2, 2015): 19–37.… [...]

Anderson, C.W. “Towards a Sociology of Computational and Algorithmic Journalism.” New Media & Society 15, no. 7 (2012). [...]

“Guide to COVID-19 Vaccine Communications: A Practitioner’s Guide to the Principles of COVID-19 Vaccine Communications.” Center for Public Interest Communications, University of Florida, 2020. [...]