Report: publishers jump on Slack, then pitch big news stories to Apple News

When news publishers have a big story these days,” their editors jump on Slack and pitch it to an unlikely partner: Apple,” according to The Information. The tech giant has built a “small but powerful news team that is making Apple a key distribution outlet for news publishers,” the article adds. 

From a pitch received via a dedicated Slack channel, Apple’s editorial team of about a dozen staffers in the U.S. decides what story gets featured at the top of the app or to the left of the home screen. That can yield a flood of traffic for publishers.

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However, some publishers feel that there’s not a consistent, predictable stream of readers through the service. Instead, major traffic is driven by Apple's selection of "Spotlight" or "Top Stories" with little attention given to non-breaking news.

The Apple News service  is reportedly led by Apple executive Roger Rosner, reporting directly to Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue. The team on Slack accepting pitches is likely led by one-time New York Magazine editor and recent Apple hire Lauren Kern —and the team under her command is reportedly growing.

Other publishers complain that they don’t earn any significant ad revenue from the Apple News service.