Photo by Kathleen Flynn of American Reportage

Edison Dardar cast-nets on Island Road on Isle de Jean Charles, Louisiana, a narrow land ridge southwest of New Orleans that’s in perpetual risk of eroding into the Gulf of Mexico. Dardar was born on the island and says he has no plans on leaving, despite the thrashing the island has endured from hurricanes and coastal erosion. Kathleen Flynn, who took this photograph in 2013, is a member of the American Reportage collective. See more of her work here.

January 20, 2019

Introducing American Reportage

Pooling resources to cover postindustrial cities and tell stories that need to be told.


BY Matt Stroud


A founding principle of Postindustrial Media is the value of the collective good. Sure, we think competition is necessary and we love a good debate. But if cities like Pittsburgh and Detroit and Cleveland are going to have a nationally resonant voice and a focused vision for the future, we’ve gotta pool our resources and ideas. 

We feel the same way about journalism. 

Postindustrial doesn’t have the capital or the infrastructure that The New York Times or Fox News or even Vox Media does. But when it comes to covering our region, we’ve got advantages: First of all, we live here, so we know the stories and the people and and the issues that matter. And second, we have access to some of the best journalists in the country.

Along those lines, let us introduce you to American Reportage.

Photo by Pete Marovich of American Reportage

Photo by Adria Malcolm of American Reportage

Photo by Justin Merriman of American Reportage

Photo by Pete Marovich of American Reportage

Photo by Adria Malcolm of American Reportage

After the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review quit publishing a daily newspaper, a huge swath of its reporters and photographers lost their jobs. This kind of thing certainly isn’t new: Newspapers and magazines all over the country have cut staffing budgets as print business models have been retooled. But one of the Trib’s most prolific and well-traveled photographers, Justin Merriman, saw an opportunity. News still needed to be covered in these regions. So why not pool resources to cover them?

American Reportage was born.

Right now, American Reportage is a collective of six photographers — some of the best and most respected in journalism, and based in cities across the country that are not New York City and Los Angeles. As a collective, they provide photography in under-covered regions for some of the most recognizable outlets in the country.

They also provide Postindustrial Media with the photography — and the image insights — to help this newsletter and tell stories that words can’t tell.

So keep your eyes open for them.

Photo by Brian Plonka of American Reportage

When an image is credited to American Reportage — and/or to any of its phenomenal photographers — know that it’s in support of that collective good that Postindustrial Media is all about.

Our resonant voice and focused vision depend on it.


Stay tuned to for more collaborative work with American Reportage and other outlets.

Photo by Jeff Swensen of American Reportage

Photo by Justin Merriman of American Reportage

Matt Stroud, an accomplished journalist and book author, is a former staff writer with Bloomberg and the Associated Press who has written for Esquire, Harper’s, BuzzFeed, The Atlantic, and The New York Times.

DIVE DEEPER: American Reportage


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