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Newsroom Cafe discussion, taken from:

Team members: Michael Skoler, Clyde Bentley, Stephanie Durand, David Cohn, Taylor Wiegert, Maria Garcia, Jung-Ha-Berkshire, Rob Weir.

Text by Bill Densmore

Turning coffee into community -- taking coffee shops and bring back a little bit of the community. Bring a young community of people who care about their community and the world. Values are that it feeds passion, intellectual stimulation, provides social capital, personal image/brand. One step beyond Starbucks.

Target consumer: Is ages 18-34, interested in social issues and not afraid to speak out. It will be a public sphere like the old European tea salons. Young professionals, university students, socially-aware/curious, consumers of information, yuppies, creatives. Vale proposition: Feeds consumer passion, relates to personal image/self-brand, offers intellectual stimulation, provides social capital, allows for extended understanding of local and global issues. Values statement: We value creativity and public opinion, and support those who take the lead rather than follow from behind. Tagline: "An open space for open minds." Total market: $13.2 billion, 70 percent of adults drink coffee. It is 72 million people in the United States. Key milestones: "There is a hunger to turn it into bricks and mortar." Coffee shops already make a 19% profit margin.

Revenue project: Franchising fee of 5%; food and drink there's a 19% for food and drink, also putting on events, doing media products and co-working rent. Send reporters from news organizations to hang out at coffee shops. Business management team: Need a franchise business manager, coffee-shop business manager (relationships with coffee sources, buys and oversees distribution of supplies, oversees development), community-engagement officer, journalistic advisor and marketing manager. Show grow from a grass roots, word-of-mouth perspective. Competition: Biggest competition -- large franchise owners, however, Newsroom Cafe offers open, participatory. Starbucks has 11,600 stores, other competitors Dunkin Donuts, Intelligentsia, Bridgeport Coffee (Chicago). Challenges risks: Crowded market where incumbents are making a lot of money. But can offer distinct value proposition. You come into these coffee shops expect to engage. If you want to sit alone, go to Starbucks, if you want an environment where people are like you. There has to be a culture created around special employees -- baristas are going to be journalists who blog. Need to attract young people around discussing issues that matter to them, their lives and their community. Skoler: "We don't believe that for a second, we just want to get them charged up in a great environment."


There are "Newscafes" around United States, including one in Miami's South Beach.Answer: That will be sorted out somehow.

Bill Densmore: Says we've had discussions with the owner of Miami NewsCafes.

Q: Can you pay a blogging barista the wages Starbucks pays its baristas?

Q: Did you think about partying with Starbucks?

A: Skoler: The real model is in franchising and going up against the Starbucks brand. Can be monetized in a variety of ways.

Q: Could this work in anything other than a coffee shop?

A: They discussed this. Coffee shop kind of came to mind as the right density and atmosphere.

Q: Why age 18-34?

A: Needed a target market. Not about exclusion but picking a target market that already has the habit of going to coffee-shops.

"It's not about drinking coffee, it's about community but what we're selling is people who have the coffee habit.

Q: How will you control quality of discussion. So experience my differ from today to tomorrow.

A: Unique because it tackles this particular cultural environment. We will continue to adapt to needs. WE don't want to exclude anybody because of their opinions.

Other ideas from morning brainstorming session

Text by Dorothy Carner

      1. - Represents idea chosen for the group to expand on

Target people who read the news, but info gets lost in shuffle – Set up a profile – explains the impact of the news on the individual. Delivers news based on content that you would prefer reading. Delivers new content based on interest. News relevant to you – personalization.

Comments: Differentiation? Ability to get feedback if you are only looking at one intelligent news agent. Takes major news items that may not be interesting but makes the news relevant to you. Automated vs. manual

      1. News room café – can’t get into news buildings. Starbucks-like café – community events, community training – franchised. Sense of community. Contribute to the news. Meet reports on staff. Physically tied in with news building. Not limited to the newsroom.

Comments: Shouldn’t be tied to physical space. Events can be a revenue stream if they can leverage their physical space. Civic debates. Tech space uses this type of space use. Monetizing through communities that may not be there yet.

Personalized story – link between the world and you. Diaries, journals, link to what is happening to the world. Make an album of your life. Personalized journals connected to what is happening in the world.

Comments: Facebook does not have a history - Becomes a history book. Could pull from Facebook. Personal Wikipedia. Differentiation concern. Not a new idea – already in Seattletourning