Amy Schmitz Weiss

Amy Schmitz Weiss is an associate professor in the School of Journalism and Media Studies at San Diego State University. Schmitz Weiss is a 2011 Dart Academic Fellow and has a PhD in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin. She teaches journalism courses in basic writing and editing, multimedia, web design, data journalism, and mobile journalism. She is also the 2011-2012 Recipient of the AEJMC Bridge Grant with funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation that led to the creation of a mobile news app, AzteCast for the San Diego State University campus population in spring 2012. She also is a former journalist who has been involved in new media for more than a decade. She has worked in business development, marketing analysis and account management for several Chicago Internet media firms. Her research interests include online journalism, media sociology, news production, multimedia journalism, and international communication. She is also a regular blog contributor to the Investigative News Network, a resource center for community-based and nonprofit journalism.

Recent Articles

Leading the Way: INN Members Pioneer State Public Data Initiatives

Data-driven journalism is quickly becoming another important skill set in the reporter’s toolbox, a unique form of storytelling in today’s digital media environment and a way for public data to reach people that shows real impact. News organizations such as The New York Times, and INN members Texas Tribune  and ProPublica are some of the exemplars that are charting the path of how data journalism can have an impact on the communities they serve. Nonprofit news organizations have a perfect opportunity to help contribute to charting this path toward the data-driven journalism effort all while helping their communities be informed on the important issues that impact their daily lives. This week, we focus on INN members and New Mexico In-Depth and their innovative approaches to covering their state using data-driven journalism techniques that are making a big impact one data point at a time.’s Campaign Finance Database: Follow the Money

For Anne Galloway, founder of, her data project has been a labor of love. Continue Reading →

Filed under:

Building New Audiences, Engaging the Community with Pinterest


Is Pinterest still relevant for the news industry to use? This week we highlight some of the news organizations that are using Pinterest for innovative purposes and shedding light on new ways that Pinterest can open the door for nonprofit news organizations to use the platform to build new audiences and engage with the community. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , ,

Recruiting Strategies to Find a Great Hire

social network

Finding the right person to join your news organization can be a challenge. The recruiting and hiring process can be lengthy but if you take the right steps, it can make all the difference when you have that great staff member join your team. This week I will be sharing tips on how to find that great hire. Define What the Position is and What it is Not

First, you have to identify what are the responsibilities of the individual you are seeking to add to your team. Don’t get wrapped up in titles just yet as the actual tasks of what you want that person to do are the most important. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Building Community, Innovation: The Power of Coding Workshops, Hackathons for Nonprofit News Organizations

coding event

Social coding events have become more popular in recent years due to the increasing open civic data movement in the United States and around the world. This week we take a look into what it takes for a nonprofit news organization to implement its own social coding event. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , ,

Grant Writing Tips for Nonprofit News Organizations


If you are a nonprofit news organization you are most likely familiar with the world of fundraising and grant writing. Whether you are a newbie or veteran to this process, this week I provide some tips to help you in your adventures on the grant-writing road. Continue Reading →

Filed under:

Search Insights: Getting to Know Your Audience Better

As a nonprofit news organization, you may think you know who your news audience is by your interactions with them via social media channels, through chats or discussions forums, or even at face-to-face events, but that is only a part of it. Do you know what your audience is doing when they are searching for information online? Do you know the people who are coming to your site from a search? You can get to know your audience better by understanding their search activities and in the process you may be able to gain some new readers along the way. This week's post focuses on how to understand search and some tools that can help you to know your audience better. Continue Reading →

Filed under: