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Janosch Troehler

Newsrooms are struggling with cultivating a product-driven mindset. Here are some of my thoughts on why this is the case.

Since I started as a Product Owner for a large news platform, I exchanged with other POs in the media industry. In the process, I realized that many colleagues are struggling with the same issues.

I also remembered an insightful listicle by Konrad Weber about the missing product-driven mindset in journalism.

Weber synthesizes his findings in six key reasons:

I fully agree with Weber’s analysis, but I…

Here’s a small tutorial on my fairly simple setup to feed audio from my computer into the latest hype in social media: Clubhouse.

Clubhouse is the new, popular kid on the social media playground. It’s a voice-based network that’s currently only available on iOS devices. Many are wondering how to get audio from other devices into Clubhouse.

Here’s a short tutorial on how I do it on my Windows PC without a physical mixer and a lot of expensive hardware.
(Note: This is a work-in-progress tutorial. It might change over time.)

Get your voice into your PC

First, you need to connect a microphone to your computer. I use a Røde NT-USB microphone.

Now, you need to get a virtual mixer on your computer. …

I refuse to think of online comments as society’s cesspit. There is value.

Some love them, and many hate them — the commenting sections on online news sites. There they are rambling, the angry, the mean-spirited, the hating people. A sinister snakepit, somewhere below the articles, where only the dark souls arrive.

Admittedly, this sounds dramatic, layered with some dripping pathos. However, the opinion on online comments is low — also in 2020. A while ago, a journalist wrote on Twitter: “I say it over and over again: If I’d be an editor-in-chief, there wouldn’t be any comments on my site.”

Today, journalism cannot afford such an attitude. The internet not only democratized…

The stories we tell on always spark intense discussions. In 2018, we reshaped our approach to online comments. Here’s how we think about our comment section, and how we built an in-house moderation.

Online debates are often loud, aggressive, and publishers don’t know how to address the problem. Two years ago, the situation on was the same as it is in many newsrooms: The comment section is perceived as a cesspit of hate, trolling, and frankly a waste of time. Nobody felt responsible for its quality. Therefore, bulk delete was overused.

At the same time, the realization grew that user engagement via the comments is valuable to our journalism. The commenters are some of our most loyal users; they spend more time on our platform. Moreover, the comments have an impact on…

Design Thinking has become a major buzzword in the last few years. It is clear that Design Thinking is not the solution for everything. However, as a human-centered framework that “integrates the needs of people, the possibilities of technology, and the requirements for business success” (Tim Brown), Design Thinking may provide a useful process for public-powered journalism.

In a research paper for my master’s degree in Digital Management at Hyper Island, I explored the ways Design Thinking could be applied in journalism. …

About tough decisions, priorities, and admitting limits.

In 2007, I finally knew what I’d wanted to do for a living. It was the school’s newspaper that led me to become a journalist – no matter what.

During the apprenticeship, I started an online magazine called Negative White, covering alternative music and culture. That was almost a decade ago. It was a hobby back then but evolved to voluntary work over the last couple of years. The team grew, additional products and services were added. It was a hell of a ride. Negative White was my playground, a lab for experiments. The experience gained is invaluable.

However, I’ve…

Lately, I’ve been studying the Reuters report ‘Journalism, Media and Technology Trends and Predictions 2019’. It’s a reading I heavily recommend.

One of the most intriguing aspects of this report is the pivot toward subscriptions, memberships, and donations. There are successful media organizations like The New York Times (subscriptions), The Correspondent (memberships), and The Guardian (donations) that prove those models might work.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

However, these three business strategies differ significantly in their approach: The basis for a successful subscription business is high-quality content the public is willing paying for. …

Some thoughts on toxic egos in leadership positions and how I fight them.

Photo by Hunters Race on Unsplash

I stumbled on this article by the Harvard Business Review about how inflated egos are the enemies of good leadership, thanks to Konrad Weber’s Twitter feed. Although the report only scratches the surface of the issue, it made me think about my own experiences.

Especially as I work in the media industry, I encountered several times this phenomenon I call toxic egos or toxic leadership. It‘s characterized through apathy, rejection, and disruption of creative processes. Sometimes, these toxic egos show up in phrases like “We‘ve always done it this way” or “This won‘t work.”

If you work in the media…

About nine years ago, my brother bought his first camera to capture concerts. I was writing for several music blogs in Switzerland at that time. My brother, then an apprentice in IT, asked: „Why don’t we start an online magazine?“ – So we founded Negative White.

Since then, Negative White has evolved a lot not only from a technological standpoint but also the team grew to over 20 contributing reporters, photographers, and producers. The platform is still operating on a volunteer basis, the revenue of approximately 6000 Swiss Francs is being re-invested in the infrastructure.

Negative White consumes a vast…

In the aftermath of the Zermatt Summit 2018, I thought a lot about environmental issues and sustainability. Here are some loose thoughts I had.

Photo by Thomas Lambert on Unsplash

Before I bother you with my thoughts, I should define sustainability a little bit better. For me, sustainability has three stakeholders: The environment, the economy, and society. Something has to meet the needs of all three stakeholders to be sustainable.

During my thought process, I identified three topics around which my thoughts gather: Awareness, the duality of money and moral, and our habits.

So let us begin:


Since I dived in more in-depth into the subject, I‘ve been a lot more conscious when I do my grocery shopping. For example, I realized I have to let go of one of…

Janosch Troehler

Change is an opportunity. Product Owner at and learning at Hyper Island.

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