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Matter Expands: four media partners join forces

Matter — the mission-driven media accelerator that PRX helped launch back in 2012 — has just announced that four major media companies have joined our community alongside original founding partners PRX, Knight Foundation, and KQED.

You can read more from Matter Managing Partner Corey Ford in his post. Below is also a press release from McClatchy — one of the four new partners — that helps explain their reason for joining.

With our fourth class of startups underway (announcement on who is in the class will be out tomorrow) and these new partners, it’s clear that Matter has reached an important moment of impact in media.

Having helped first developed the concept of the “public media accelerator” that evolved into Matter under Corey’s leadership, it’s exciting to see Matter take shape at the center of a community bringing entrepreneurship, design thinking, and public media values into the tech startup movement.



SACRAMENTO, Calif., Feb. 17, 2015 – The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI) announced today that it has signed on as a media partner with Matter, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm and incubator that supports promising media startups and entrepreneurs.

“This is a very exciting partnership and opportunity for McClatchy,” said Pat Talamantes, McClatchy president and CEO. “In the midst of our company’s own digital transformation, Matter and the startups it nurtures will provide ideas, innovation and potential new business models for successful media companies of the future.”

In addition to McClatchy, The Associated Press, A.H. Belo Corporation and Community Newspaper Holdings Inc. will join founding media partners KQED Public Media for Northern California, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Public Radio Exchange in support of the Matter program.

The new partnership features a powerful mix of international, national and local media organizations with a vast reach across television, radio, digital and print. The network of media partners gives participating startups extensive mentorship by industry leaders, connections to potential customers and real-world opportunities to test their ideas.

Matter, founded in 2012, brings selected startups together at its San Francisco headquarters that “have potential to become meaningful media institutions of the future – creating a more informed, connected and empowered society.”

Matter invests seed capital and provides an intensive, five-month program for the budding entrepreneurs to refine their business plans, develop prototypes, work collaboratively with other entrepreneurs and learn from leaders in media and technology. The program culminates with “demo days” presentations in San Francisco and New York in front of a select group of investors, media executives, mentors and others.

Matter has a current portfolio of 19 early-stage media ventures.

About McClatchy

The McClatchy Company is a 21st century news and information leader, publisher of iconic brands such as the Miami Herald, The Kansas City Star, The Sacramento Bee, The Charlotte Observer, The (Raleigh) News and Observer, and the (Fort Worth) Star-Telegram. McClatchy operates media companies in 28 U.S. markets in 14 states, providing each of its communities with high-quality news and advertising services in a wide array of digital and print formats. McClatchy is headquartered in Sacramento, Calif., and listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol MNI.

Contact: Karole Morgan-Prager
Vice President, Corporate Development,
General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
(916) 321-1828

Zeitfunk 2014: Most Licensed Producer, Group and Station

The Most Licensed Producer, Group and Station categories are open to any account on PRX without a subscribable series.

Here are the top accounts. Stay tuned for the announcement of the first place winner, coming Feb. 13!


*WINNER* Jeff Haas
Philip Nusbaum
Daniel Wargo
Stephen R. Webb
Charles Lee
Michael Park
Al Grauer
Chris Kuborn
Matt “The Cat” Baldassarri
Guy Rathbun


*WINNER* Moyers & Company
Vinyl Cafe
99% Invisible
BackStory with the American History Guys
Bluesnet Radio
With Good Reason
L.A. Theatre Works
NPR Music
Deutsche Welle
Isla Earth
Ken Rudin’s Political Junkie
A Way with Words
Third Coast International Audio Festival
Big Picture Science
Live Wire! Radio
WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour
Philosophy Talk
National Endowment for the Arts


The WFMT Radio Network

#Zeitfunk2014 on Twitter.

Check out the rest of the Zeitfunk categories as well as other useful stats and facts.

Have a website? Turn that visitor into a listener!

How many websites have you visited just once, scanned the page quickly, didn’t click anything and then never returned? I know that I do this dozens, if not hundreds of times each week. You probably do too. I’ll show you how you can use two simple tools (both free) to convert your visitor into a future listener.

NOOO… Please Don’t Leave Me!

Most websites, regardless of industry or type, have traffic that visits, scans quickly and doesn’t read, click, listen or share anything. The percentage differs depending on the industry but for media sites, the range is 25% on the low end, and 80% on the high end. If you have a poor bounce rate, only 20 people of that 100 are going to stick around and do anything with your website. For reference, at PRX our bounce rate is about 40%.

There are all sorts of things that might be done to improve your bounce rate, and you should look at ways to improve that, but we’re going to focus on what to do with those people that are going to leave anyway.

There are a tools, services and entire companies that are devoted to helping address this problem. The label that I’ve seen applied to this class of problem is called “Exit Intent” technology. Figuring out ways to keep the conversation going with the visitor, encouraging them to stick around just a bit longer, and if they are intent on leaving, trying one last time to establish a dialog with them.

These tools typically display a prompt to the visitor as they are leaving your website, or as they scroll down the page. More advanced tools can detect the placement and movement of the visitors mouse while on your website, and as they move their mouse up to the browser close button, wanting to close the tab or window, a prompt is shown asking the exiting visitor to do something, try another story, read another article or most typically, join their email newsletter.

At PRX, we’ve been using a service called SumoMe, which if you are using WordPress, is dead simple to install and get started. SumoMe has a free plan so you can get started right away. We pay for it so we can get a few extra features (removes their branding). There are a number of other tools and services out there too, from BounceExchange which costs several thousand dollars per month, to free and open source tools. Google search “exit intent” and you’ll get a sense of your options.

Again, the primary purpose of these tools is to convert people that were going to leave your site, most likely never to return, into someone that will come back again in the future.

OK, I’ve Got Them. Now What?

Use email. That’s it. Sorry, no magical new tool, potion or formula here. Once a visitor has decided to provide you with their email address you now have a way to encourage them to come back, to hear your stories, to come to your live event or donate and support your work.

You need to build your mailing list and keep in touch with that visitor. Did you post a new story on PRX? Add a link to the story on PRX and let that mailing list know. Were you licensed by a station? Tell people on your mailing list who live in that area of the country.

Managing and communicating with a small list, maybe less than 100 people could probably be done with your existing email tool, like Gmail. If your list grows though, or you want to segment the list so that you can target specific messages to people, you’ll want to use a Email Provider like MailChimp.

MailChimp offers a free account to get you started. As of this writing, the free plan allows you to send 12,000 emails to 2,000 people per month. The SumoMe tool works with MailChip (and others) so that when someone signs up on your website they are automatically added to MailChimp for you.

Bottom Line

The combination of tools like SumoMe and MailChimp have helped PRX add thousands of people to our mailing lists each month and encourage them to come back and listen to more stories. If you have your own website I recommend that you look at both “exit intent” tools and a mailing list provider as ways to encourage more people to hear your work.

Have a great day!
Matt – Chief Product Officer at PRX

Zeitfunk 2014: Most Listened-To Story

The Most Listened-To Story category is open to any story on PRX.

Here are the top stories.

*WINNER* Two Little Girls Explain The Worst Haircut Ever by Jeff Cohen (29,359 listens)
WTF Episode 106 with Robin Williams by WTF with Marc Maron
A Mormon, A Pickpocket and A Carpenter by The Moth
The Sound of a Working Textile Mill by Colin Kelley
WTF Episode 104 with Louis CK by WTF with Marc Maron

#Zeitfunk2014 on Twitter.

Check out the rest of the Zeitfunk categories as well as other useful stats and facts.

Zeitfunk 2014: Most Licensed Debut Producer and Group

The Most Licensed Debut Producer and Group categories are open to any producer or group on PRX whose account was created in 2014.

Here are the top debut accounts.


*WINNER* Clay Ryder
Peter Johnson
Garrett Stack
W F Strong
Anna Rose MacArthur
Nancy Klingener


*WINNER* Mighty Writers (55 licenses)
Cannabis Radio News
ChavoBart Digital Media
The Organist
University of Montana Journalism
This Instant Productions
The Thomas Jefferson Hour with Clay Jenkinson
Sidewalk Radio
Perspectives Radio

#Zeitfunk2014 on Twitter.

Check out the rest of the Zeitfunk categories as well as other useful stats and facts.

Zeitfunk 2014: Most Licensed by PRX Remix

The Most Licensed by PRX Remix categories are open to any station, producer and producer group on PRX.

Here are the top accounts licensed by PRX Remix.


*WINNER* KALW (30 licenses)


*WINNER* David Schulman (31 licenses)
Devon Strolovitch
Lauren Ober
Eric Molinsky
Tanner Latham
Jake Warga
Michael May
Benjamen Walker
Lea Thau


*WINNER* BackStory with the American History Guys (49 licenses)
This Land Press
Salt Institute for Documentary Studies
The Organist
Life of the Law
Blank on Blank
With Good Reason
Blunt Youth Radio Project
AIR (The Association of Independents in Radio)
Open Source with Christopher Lydon

#Zeitfunk2014 on Twitter.

Check out the rest of the Zeitfunk categories as well as other useful stats and facts.

Fast Company Names PRX and Radiotopia Top Innovative Companies

We’re thrilled to announce that Fast Company has named PRX one of the Ten Most Innovative Companies in Media and Radiotopia one of the Ten Most Innovative Kickstarter Companies (press release).

This has been a big year for PRX with Radiotopia launching just a year ago this month with a hugely successful and record-breaking Kickstarter in between. We’re a small company with a lot of big ideas and we’re honored to accept these nominations alongside other media companies like The Washington Post, Buzzfeed, Gimlet, and Medium.

Check out all of Fast Company’s Most Innovative and read our press release below.


For information, interviews, photos contact:
Patrick Kowalczyk,
Scott Piro,
PKPR, 212.627.8098



New York, February 9, 2015 – Fast Company today announced its annual ranking of the world’s Most Innovative Companies for 2015, honoring leading enterprises and rising newcomers that exemplify the best in business and innovation. For “breathing life back into radio,” PRX earned the No. 5 spot in the Most Innovative Companies in Media. In addition, PRX’s podcast network Radiotopia earned the No. 4 spot in the Most Innovative Kickstarter Companies for “creating an audio utopia.”

Other companies honored along with PRX in the Media category include The Washington Post, The Guardian, Buzzfeed, Gimlet, and Medium. Radiotopia is honored in the Kickstarter category alongside Oculus VR, RRKidz, and others.

“Public radio is ripe for reinvention and we are thrilled that Fast Company has named PRX and Radiotopia as top innovators,” said Jake Shapiro, CEO of PRX. “Credit goes to our remarkable team, talented producers in our network, and listeners like you. Stay tuned for lots more to come.”

Most Innovative Companies is one of Fast Company’s most significant and highly anticipated editorial efforts of the year. The magazine’s editors spend months gathering and analyzing data on companies around the globe. The resulting package emphasizes the breadth of companies with progressive, nimble business models, an ethos of sustainability, and a culture of creativity.

Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies issue (March 2015) is now available online at as well as in app form via iTunes, and on newsstands beginning February 17.

PRX is an award-winning nonprofit public media company, harnessing innovative technology to bring compelling stories to millions of people. operates public radio’s largest distribution marketplace, offering thousands of audio stories for broadcast and digital use, including This American Life, The Moth Radio Hour, Reveal, Snap Judgment and the Radiotopia podcast network. PRX Remix is PRX’s 24/7 channel featuring the best independent radio stories and new voices. PRX is also the leading mobile app developer for public media, with apps such as Public Radio Player, PRX Remix, and This American Life.

Fast Company is the world’s leading progressive business media brand, with a unique editorial focus on innovation in technology, ethical economics, leadership, and design. Headquartered in New York City, Fast Company is published by Mansueto Ventures LLC, one of the U.S.’s leading media companies.

Zeitfunk 2014: Outside Purchaser that Licensed the Most

The Outside Purchaser that Licensed the Most category is open to any OP* on PRX.

Here are our top OP’s that Licensed the Most on PRX. PRX Remix licensed the most stories in 2014, however since we would rather not award ourselves, we’ll be awarding the runner-up.

PRX Remix (761 licenses)
*WINNER* Radio New Zealand (76 licenses)
Accessible Media Inc.
Listen Edition

#Zeitfunk2014 on Twitter.

Check out the rest of the Zeitfunk categories as well as other useful stats and facts.

* Outside Purchasers are groups on PRX who can purchase content and are not public radio stations in the United States. Read more about the Outside Purchaser program here.

Zeitfunk 2014

It’s that time of year again – time when we reflect upon the past year, tally up the licenses and listens, and give you a picture of what the action is like on We’ll be announcing the nominees through this week, so stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter accounts for announcements.

First, some stats:

During 2014
8701 unique pieces were licensed, many of those licensed more than once, with a total of 36,629 licenses..
200 new producers sold pieces
517 new series were created.
and 15,591 new pieces were published.

By Dec. 31st, 2014, PRX had:
636 active stations on PRX licensing stories.
3851 producers posting stories on PRX.
And check out our most licensed story lengths – producers, find out what’s selling!

And now for the the 2014 Zeitfunk Categories!

Most Licensed Producer, Most Licensed Group, and Most Licensed Station

Most Licensed Series | Most Licensed Story

Most Licensed Debut Producer and Most Licensed Debut Group

Station that Licensed the Most | Outside Purchaser that Licensed the Most

Most Listened-To Story

Most Licensed Producer, Group and Station by PRX Remix

PRX Staff Favorites of 2014

Share the love on Twitter: #Zeitfunk2014.