It’s been a huge year for Croakey – and we’re keen to hear suggestions and feedback from readers and contributors, including about the developments outlined below.
Highlights of the year have included:
The launch of The Health Wrap
This fortnightly wrap of the international, national and local health news is provided as a probono contribution by Kellie Bisset and Melissa Davey at the Sax Institute. This link compiles all of the Health Wraps to date.
We are keen to hear your thoughts about the Health Wrap. Is it useful, how could it be more useful? Would you like it to be shorter, longer, to focus on particular themes each week? Are there any other topic areas you’d like covered? If your organisation is interested in cross-posting the Health Wrap, we’re happy to discuss this.
The launch of the Croakey Conference Reporting Service
As outlined here, this aims to provide a service to Croakey’s readers by helping to disseminate news from events with some public interest merit; to test new models for the funding and production of journalism; and to help ensure the sustainability of Croakey.
The service is only available for public health/health policy conferences with some public interest merit – you can link to the coverage below for:
- Australian Health Promotion Association conference
- Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation Forum
- Australian Palliative Care Conference
- Closing the Credibility Gap
- CRANAPlus conference
- FASD Conference
- Health Workforce Australia conference
- International Health Literacy network conference
- NACCHO Summit
- National Rural Health Conference
- Oceania Eco-Health Symposium
- PHAA conference
A warm thanks to those who have reported on conferences for Croakey this year: Jennifer Doggett, Marie McInerney, Mardi Chapman, Marge Overs, Rosemary Cadden and John Thompson-Mills – not to mention all the conference tweeters and citizen journalists whose energy and engagement contributes greatly to this coverage.
If you are interested in enlisting the service for a conference in 2014, please get in touch. The service provides independent reporting – not media relations or PR.
The launch of a rotated curated Twitter account, @WePublicHealth
As explained here, this account is modelled on initiatives like @IndigenousX and @WeMelbourne (and you can read more about the background in this article just published in Media International Australia, “@IndigenousX: A case study of community-led innovation in digital media”. Copy of full article is available upon request).
@WePublicHealth is billed as an experiment in citizen journalism meets public health, and aims to facilitate discussions and investigations of public health issues. Tweeters have included scientists, students, community members, doctors and other health professionals. This week’s guest tweeter is Ginny Barbour, Medicine Editorial Director for PLOS, and Chair of COPE (Committee on Publication Ethics). She is now based in Brisbane, and tweets as @GinnyBarbour.
If you are interested in guest tweeting for @WePublicHealth, please get in touch with a pitch about what you’d like to investigate.
I’m delighted that Croakey features in a chapter in this new book from Scribe Publications (you can read the book’s introduction from Margaret Simons here) and to quote from the final paragraph: “..if the past seven years is any guide, Croakey’s future development will rely on collaboration and partnerships, and a continuing focus on the public interest….”
The Croakey team of moderators has expanded – and now includes Jennifer Doggett, Michelle Hughes, Marie McInerney and Melissa Sweet.
As regular readers will know, Croakey is not driven by the click-bait mentality. Our aim is to focus on underserved issues and topics, so we don’t expect to have a mass audience. It is pleasing, nonetheless, to see that readership is steadily growing.
Our readership figures are published here, and show that by 10 December, there had been 158,119 unique visitors, 254,945 visits, and 352,383 page views this year. (From January 1 to December 31, 2012, there were 144,000 unique visits, 237,000 visits, and 319,000 page views).
And finally, thanks to those organisations that have contributed to the Croakey funding consortium, both past and present. Arrangements are now being made to continue the consortium in 2014. If you or your organisation would like to donate a modest amount to help keep Croakey afloat, we’d love to hear from you.
As the Croakey disclaimer makes clear, we do not claim to provide comprehensive coverage – it is the best we can manage on a limited budget (currently $1,600 per month), and we rely very much on the good will (and late nights) of contributors. Nonetheless, informal feedback suggests that many people value having a space for debate about some of the wider public health and health policy issues, including the social determinants of health.
Croakey will continue publishing over the festive season, so please stay tuned.
This photograph was taken in the early morning light, reflecting the dawn of a new day on an ancient landscape. I hope that 2014 brings peace, health, happiness and compassion for all in need.