We're excited today to introduce you to TribTalk — a digital forum for dialogue and debate about issues of the day. Think of it as an op-ed page for the 21st century.
The Texas Tribune and its journalists have been laser-focused on state government reporting, data and events, as the mission of our nonpartisan digital news organization is to better educate and engage Texans so they can make informed decisions at election time and all times. But we also take seriously the need to facilitate a statewide conversation about our public policy priorities, and few things stimulate frank and open discussion more than opinion and commentary.
TribTalk will feature pointed, provocative perspectives on Texas politics and policy — from campaigns and elections to education, health care, immigration, transportation, criminal justice, energy and the environment. The thought leaders who write for the site will be both well known and unsung, predictable and unexpected, established and emerging. We hope their contributions will make for the same compelling reading, viewing and listening you’ve come to expect from the Tribune. We’re also accepting columns submitted by readers like you. If you’d like to write for TribTalk, learn how here.
You’ll notice that TribTalk looks different from the Tribune site. That’s deliberate. We’re using it as a laboratory to experiment with design, features and functionality. Likewise, contributors will be encouraged to engage with readers via an innovative (and heavily moderated) commenting system.
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We’re also innovating on the economic model behind TribTalk. You’ll see some columns clearly labeled as “paid placement” and visually differentiated to ensure readers won’t confuse them with solicited or submitted op-eds. These columns are produced by corporate supporters of the Tribune who contract with its business staff to post them on TribTalk. They’re the digital equivalent of “advertorials” you’ve seen for years in newspapers and magazines — and the corporate supporters who pay for them play no role in the Tribune’s editorial decisions.
We’re excited for the launch of TribTalk, which has been nearly a year in the making. If you like what you see, we’d love it if you joined our community of everyday insiders by signing up as a member of the Tribune.
Regardless, tell us what you think! Email your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.