The Texas Tribune’s mission is to raise the level of civic engagement in Texas by providing in-depth journalism, data and events to help our fellow citizens become better informed about politics, public policy and state government. But we also take seriously the need to facilitate a statewide conversation about our priorities, and we understand that few things stimulate discussion more than opinion and commentary. That’s why we created TribTalk in May 2014 — as a digital forum for dialogue and debate about the day’s news, an op-ed page for the 21st century.
Five-and-a-half years later, in October 2019, we announced we will no longer publish TribTalk, no longer accept reader submissions, and will – in due time – retire the website tribtalk.org.
From Day One, the Trib has been committed to experimentation and innovation — to sticking with what works and parting ways with what doesn’t. Indeed, as part of our 2018 strategic planning process, we pledged to get better at saying “no” to aspects of our business that had run their course so we had the time, energy and resources to say “yes” to ambitious new ideas.
In its five year lifetime, TribTalk never garnered the same type of interest — the same traffic, the same social shares — our destination news site gets. And it never had the same devotees — the engaged audience that makes our live events and our comment threads and our member community so robust. For those reasons, we closed its doors.
But readers, never fear: We’ll still share your perspectives and voices, you’ll just find them within our news stories and our videos and our podcasts. We’ll still ask the questions you want answered, during live events, in our This Is Your Texas Facebook group, and by way of our Texplainer series. And sponsors are still able to pay to message to our audience in clearly labeled “paid posts” on our primary site, texastribune.org.
In our aforementioned strategic plan, we wrote that it was time for the Trib to get a little uncomfortable again. Sometimes that means having the guts to make hard decisions about the best use of the Trib’s resources.