Facebook has launched the Facebook Australian News Fund, an AUD$15 million funding programme spread over three years to invest in public-interest journalism, and support small, regional and digital newsroom innovation and economic sustainability.
The Walkley Foundation is managing the program independently of Facebook and will appoint an external judging panel composed of industry experts to review applications against the program’s eligibility criteria and select successful recipients.
The Foundation has previously worked with Facebook managing both the News Accelerator and Covid Relief programs. We bring to this project our proven administration skills in distributing grants, and convening panels of journalists to ensure the assessment of applications is fair and independent of stakeholder interests.
The $15 million will be divided between two funds; The Newsroom Sustainability Fund and The Public Interest Journalism Fund over three years.
The Public Interest Journalism Fund will allocate up to $2.5 million by awarding funding of up to AU$120,000 to invest in public interest journalism, support small, regional/rural newsrooms as well as newsrooms/journalists covering under-served communities, and to encourage media diversity. A minimum of eighteen projects may receive funding under this program.
The Newsroom Sustainability Fund will allocate up to $2.5 million by awarding grants of up to $250,000 to fund newsroom products and revenue-related projects. A minimum of nine projects may receive funding under this program.
How to Apply
Eligible Australian-based news organisations may apply to the Newsroom Sustainability Fund. News organisations and independent journalists may apply to the Public Interest Journalism Fund if they meet the eligibility criteria outlined in the Terms & Conditions. Applications will be competitively assessed against criteria that prioritises either public benefit and/or sustainability for their organisation.
News organisations that have applied for funding under previous Facebook programs (including the Covid-19 relief fund and Accelerator programs over the past three years) may apply for the Australian News Fund.