Assignmint gives freelancers a managerial tool

Helps to not feel so small and alone as a freelancer at your computer. (Credit: kodomut/Flickr)

Jeff Koyen, a longtime journalist and programmer, has created a program for freelance journalists called Assignmint, which helps editors and freelancers manage all the managerial communication involved in the job, according to Pando Daily. The program provides a platform where freelancers can submit pitches and receive simple “yes” or “no” responses. Assignmint also organizes the freelancer’s deadlines and has a tool for transferring payment from the publication to the reporter once stories are done.

Assignmint may have to prove its worth to freelancers and editors alike. It’s not easy to make journalists shift their systems once they’ve become accustomed to email and other relatively recent modes of operation.

Assignmint is currently available in open bata and Koyen says it will remain in that form for another three months or so. Afterwards, he says, its aesthetics will be improved.

Knight News Challenge Winner Will Make Oral History App

A more public form of oral history, sure, but JFK found his roots in ancient forms. (Flickr Creative Commons: State Library and Archives of Florida)

We know the tumultuous start that the Twitter video app Vine had with their infusion of porn. With the Internet, journalists have infinite opportunities for trial and error in creating apps and programs for expanding their abilities to tell stories. Perhaps the most ancient and ingrained human form of storytelling is oral history. Many books have adapted this strategy to capturing the essence of an era or situation.

Now, Knight News Challenge winner TKOH wants to create an app to apply to this ancient form. Like Vine, TKOH’s app will benefit citizen storytellers as well as so-called “professional journalists,” those who will be dedicating themselves to such a stature in the future.

“It’s a need we all have,” Kacie Kinzer, of TKOH, told Justin Ellis of the Nieman Lab. “There’s someone we know, a friend, a family member, who has incredible stories that must be kept in some way.”

The app will be for mobile devices.  TKOH, a design studio in New York, won $330,000 from the Knight Foundation.