News414

Who we are

Who we are

News414 is a service journalism initiative that addresses the specific issues, interests, perspectives and information identified by residents of central city Milwaukee neighborhoods, especially zip codes 53206 and 53215. It was launched in 2020 by Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service and Wisconsin Watch and Detroit-based Outlier Media.


News414 meets people where they are. Using brief targeted text messages, e-mail, and social media posts, the project aims to:

  • Provide useful information on topics like food security, housing, employment, civil rights; public health and more.
  • Put local voices first in news about Milwaukee neighborhoods by asking residents what information they need.
  • Bring broader attention to issues, challenges and opportunities that matter to local residents.
  • Connect residents with the information they need to shape solutions to systematic inequity and racial disparities in Milwaukee.
(Screenshot of a News414 conversation)

News414 uses text-messaging to disseminate information because of its inclusive reach. While some residents lack internet service, most have access to a mobile phone and can receive texts. Texting also allows residents to quickly connect with reporters who can find answers to their questions or incorporate feedback into our news stories. And News414 also engages with residents on other channels — including online and through events and other in-person outreach.