About ONA21

It’s time to get excited! ONA’s 22nd annual conference will be hosted June 22-25. We bring together some of the best and brightest in digital journalism, focusing on innovation in audience engagement, product development, trends forecasting and digital business strategy.

Our creative participants range from experienced veterans at international news outlets to representatives from major tech companies to leaders of local news startups to those just getting started in their media careers.

Registration will open soon. On-demand recordings of most sessions will be available for several months past the end of the event, so registered participants won’t have to worry about missing out on any sessions or topics.

For regular updates about conference opportunities sign up for our newsletter.


Participant Questions

When will registration open for ONA21?

We anticipate registration opening in late April or early May. Our newsletter and this website will be the best resources for knowing when registration is open.

Do you accept pitches to ONA21?

Yes, the bulk of our programming comes from a public call out for session ideas via our Suggestion Box. The submission process will likely open in March 2021. Additionally, ONA may extend invitations to specific presenters for their expertise. If you represent a VIP and want to explore an invitation, please email trevor@journalists.org.

When do you expect to resume in-person events?

We are exploring the possibility of having a safe and socially-distanced regional event in Philadelphia in October 2021. Safety is our first priority, and we are also assessing the comfort of our community including journalists, partners and sponsors, vendors and other participants. In the meantime, we’ve documented the benefits for attending our virtual annual conference on our Why Attend ONA21 page.

How do I get to sessions or events?

Once you’re registered, you’ll be able to easily log into this website and head to the schedule page, then click into a specific session or networking event.

Will sessions be available for on-demand viewing?

Most sessions and activities are available for on-demand viewing for paid registrants.

Please note that some presenters may ask that we pull the archived video due to the sensitive nature of content. Naturally, it won’t make sense to post video of interactive networking events. There’s also the outside chance of a tech failure. So there may be some sessions without an archive available.

Will the video archives be available to the public?

Videos and any resources, such as presenter slides, will only be available to people who have registered and have an account on the ONA21 site.

What bandwidth / hardware needs will ONA21 require?

Generally speaking, we recommend a laptop or desktop with the latest version of Google Chrome or Firefox for the best possible ONA21 experience, plus the ability to stream video. You can view sessions on mobile devices as well, but participating in the chat might be difficult. To the extent possible, we worked to provide browser-based experiences.

Midway and Sponsor Questions

One of the reasons I go to the annual ONA conference is to meet with or discover companies and products. Will that be possible in a virtual conference?

You bet! ONA21 is using Grip, a professional networking platform that helps attendees meet and connect with exhibitors and fellow attendees one-on-one through text or video chat.

Each attendee has an individual profile that can be updated with a picture, bio and interests. Each exhibiting company or organization has its own page linking to offerings and representatives to contact for more information. Attendees and exhibitors can see who else is at the conference by searching by title or interest area, job type and more. Grip’s AI will recommend other attendees you might want to connect with based on shared interests or connections.

I have sponsored ONA conferences in the past because I rely on the event to develop professional connections with different news companies and representatives from throughout the digital news industry. Will that be possible in a virtual conference?

Yes. Decision-makers throughout digital journalism are participating in this year’s event. There are a variety of ways to connect sponsors, supporters and Midway participants with ONA21 attendees. These include group and one-to-one interactions through the conference’s Grip platform, as well as larger networking events throughout the program.

How can I sponsor ONA21?

We have many opportunities to support ONA21. Please email jessica@journalists.org to discuss opportunities and ask questions about our plans.

What are the benefits of sponsoring ONA21?

Sponsoring ONA21 means that you are supporting journalism and our organization in a time when the global news industry is facing considerable challenges.

Additionally, ONA is uniquely positioned to deliver a phenomenal experience in a virtual environment. We’re proud to stand at the cross-section of news and tech and to help  shepherd partnerships and new opportunities. We also have years of feedback and data to help guide us and expand our reach even further than before – connecting you to forward-thinking professionals across digital news and journalism technology.

Will there be a version of the Start-Up Alley?

Yes, we are continuing to support companies two years and younger by creating opportunities specific to their needs and budget.

Will there be Midway Programming?

Yes, there is Midway Programming throughout ONA21. For more details about Midway Programming, please email midway@journalists.org.

Other questions?

Contact registration@journalists.org.

Code of Conduct

Staff, supporters, volunteers, attendees and speakers are expected to adhere to ONA’s Code of Conduct.