The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation announced a $975,000 grant to be used by The Texas Tribune and The Bay Citizen to develop an open-source publishing platform for online news organizations to use free-of-charge.

The two nonprofit online news sources said the goals of the platform they will develop are to enable other online news organizations to engage with readers, manage content, and raise revenue, and the platform should be inexpensive to implement, yet flexible enough to keep up the pace with innovations in the industry.

Knight Foundation digital media director John S. Bracken said:

We hope this platform will help other online news startups stay technologically nimble and offer them a better opportunity to publish content and engage with their communities.

Bay Citizen chief technology officer Brian Kelley added:

Knight Foundation’s generous support of technological innovation creates a bright future for online news organizations. Organizations will no longer be faced with the cost and expense of developing their own publishing platforms from the ground up, or tied to using systems that were not meant for online news. And, as an open-source initiative, this will be a collaborative effort that engages developers, journalists, and editors from all over the country to actively participate in ongoing development and enhancement.

And Texas Tribune founding CTO Higinio Maycotte said:

The technology team at The Texas Tribune has been working hard with the team at The Bay Citizen over the past year to create a single platform for high-functioning, demanding newsrooms. We are excited to develop what hopefully becomes a technology “blueprint” for sustainable newsrooms and share it with the rest of the news industry so that online journalism can continue to find its way to readers that seek it.