Got a question? We’ve tried to answer all our most frequently asked questions below. But, if you are still in need of some help, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at [email protected]. We’re here to help!
What is Fenix?
Fenix is quality journalism, crowdfunded on a story-by-story basis.
How does it work?
1. We present to you a menu of story ideas 💡
2. You contribute to your faves 💸
3. Once a story is fully funded, it goes into production 📝
4. You will get monthly dispatches from your journalist updating you on the progress 📩
5. When it’s done, you get to read the story, exclusively 🤓
Where are you based?
Freelance journalists work all over the globe, but you’ll find most of our team in the United States in places like Virginia, Atlanta, and Houston. Our founder and editor is based in New York City.
Our Menu of Stories
What is a campaign?
Campaigns are where we present you with our story ideas. They’ll always include a pre-reported narrative pitch and an FAQ section to explain what the story is and some of the logistics behind the reporting. Both of these are written by the journalist who came up with the story idea and will write the article.
What kind of stories do you write about? What topics are you covering?
The short answer is anything and everything. If this sounds insane, then the long answer is that we believe the internet has changed the game for how journalism is structured. Audiences no longer consume whole publications. They consume one story at a time, so we will write to fit this need. What we can tell you with certainty is that we are committed to quality journalism. So each story will always have tons of interviews, nuanced insight, and entertaining writing.
How do you pick which stories to pitch?
Our articles will always be original pieces. So, when we are looking for a potential article, we seek stories that have enough sources and information to warrant an in-depth look. Our journalists do pre-reporting work that includes reaching out to potential interview subjects as well as initial research in order to guarantee we can deliver a quality article.
How do you pick the journalists?
We are building our network of freelance journalists to pitch on Fenix. Typically, we look for reporters who have experience creating longform content, developing sources, and requesting documents. Lots and lots of documents.
Who can write stories?
At the moment, we are only publishing stories from freelance journalists with reporting experience. It’s our hope that as we grow, we will be able to hire full-time journalists for our team.
When do you upload new campaigns?
We will be posting these on a rolling basis. We want to get stories funded and into production as quickly as possible, so as soon as the pitch is ready, we will post and let you know!
How much do the stories cost?
The cost of the stories varies depending on the freelancer’s fee. Some stories take more time and resources to produce, so they are more expensive. Some of them are written by more experienced journalists, so they require a larger fee. At this time, all stories are priced at the journalist’s freelance fee, and Fenix is covering all other costs. We recognize this is a new model for journalism and want to keep the cost to readers as low as possible.
What if I’m not interested in any of your stories?
Didn’t see anything you wanted to fund, huh? It’s alright! We will be posting new stories on a rolling basis. You can sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date on what we have coming up, and you can always send us an email at [email protected] if you have an idea of something you think we could cover.
What are the crowdfunding levels?
You can contribute to stories at a $2, $5, or $12 level. $2 gets you basic access to a story. $5 gets you basic access + an audio version of the story. $12 is our best value option. It gets you basic access + an audio version of three different stories.
Why did you pick those levels?
We spent some time researching how to price these contributions. We wanted the basic contribution to a story to be priced at a level that was as accessible to audiences as possible while still allowing us to pay the journalist. This led us to the basic $2 level. The other levels are based on this one.
Who can fund stories?
Anyone with a debit or credit card can contribute to a story! We come powered with some cool e-commerce processing technology from Stripe (the folks behind Warby Parker, Kickstarter, and Spotify’s e-commerce platform). They are helping us process both charges in the U.S. and internationally.
How are stories funded?
Once you select your crowdfunding level, you will be directed to a Check Out Page where you’ll be able to create an account with Fenix (if you haven’t already) and enter in your payment information. Fenix does not make any charges until the story has reached its funding goal, so you may not see a charge on your card until later on. We will give you a heads up when this is about to happen!
Where does my money go?
Your money goes directly to the journalist writing the story. At this time, all stories are priced at the journalist’s freelance rate in order to keep the cost of the story as low as possible.
What happens if I contributed to a story and it doesn’t get funded completely?
You get your money back! Easy and simple.
How do you process my payment?
Once a story is fully funded, we use Stripe (the folks behind Warby Parker, Kickstarter, and Spotify’s e-commerce platform) to process your payment. It should come through on your card as a charge from Fenix Journalism.
Is this a one-time payment?
Yes! Once you pay for the story, you have unlimited, lifetime access to it. No need to subscribe to keep reading.
When is my card charged?
Your initial purchase will be a pre-order of the story. Once the story is fully funded, we will let you know via email that we are about to make the charge to your card.
How do I know my contribution went through?
You will get a receipt via email from [email protected] letting you know we received your contribution.
I’m having an issue with my payment. How can I contact you?
If you have any issues at all, please reach out to [email protected] so we can help out!
Producing the Story
How long does it take to write a story?
The deadline of any story will vary depending on how much work it takes to report it. Some stories are easier to report with widely available resources, while others take additional investigating. Our stories are all deeply researched, so they will all take at least a couple of months to create. Regardless, once a story is funded, we will set a deadline and meet it.
How will you update me on its progress? How will I be notified when the story is ready?
We will keep in touch through email. We’ll reach out once a story is fully funded and update you on its deadline. Afterward, your journalist will send monthly dispatches from their reporting location to keep you posted on progress. We will send you one last email to let you know the story is ready to go, and you can log onto your Fenix account to read it.
What happens if the journalist can’t write the story?
No story is 100% guaranteed to happen. Sources might fall through or we might discover what we thought was a story wasn’t really one at all. If for whatever reason, your story cannot be completed, we will refund your contribution.
How do you ensure the quality of the story?
Creating quality content is our utmost priority. We take several steps to ensure this happens. First, we make sure we are working with journalists of integrity and with experience. Then, we ask all of our journalists to make sure they have multiple interviews from multiple perspectives as well as documents and as much supporting evidence as they can possibly find. An editor is also working closely with them to ask questions and bring a different perspective to the piece. Finally, we bring on a fact checker to look through the story and make sure we have all of our ducks in a row.
How long are the stories?
They’re long, but only as long as they need to be. We are passionate about diving deeply into a subject and covering as much of its nuance as possible. This often translates into a lengthy piece of writing, so we recommend you brew a pot of coffee (or in our case a French press) and dive into the story.
How do I get access to my story once it’s finished?
Your story will be available on our website. You can access it through a link or through your dashboard after you’ve logged in.
Is Fenix a platform?
Nope. We made a conscious decision to make Fenix a publisher of great stories rather than a platform. Our intent is to ensure quality, and we just don’t believe we could do this if Fenix were crowdfunding stories from all over the web.
Love your mission. I’ve already donated to all the campaigns I can. What else can I do?
First of all, thank you! Your support means everything to us. If you’d like to keep supporting our mission and seeing us grow, you can donate to our company crowdfunding campaign. We will use these funds to keep Fenix growing for you.
What happens if I missed the deadline to contribute?
It’s alright! You can still access the story once it is finished by purchasing it through our website.
I don’t have time to read such a long story. Suggestions?
We get it. You’re busy, and these stories can take some time. This is why we have created the option for you to fund the story and get access to an audio version of it. So you can listen to great journalism while you do the dishes, sit in traffic or get ready. We gotchu.
I’m a freelance journalist and would like to pitch Fenix. How can I do that?
We love hearing this! Please reach out to us at [email protected] with a few stories you’ve written in the past that match the Fenix style, and we can get back to you.