"Spot Journalism" is a branding for a concept I’ve had in my brain for some time. I’ll go into more detail on it eventually. For now, it’s still kicking around. Think Kiva.org/Craigslist except aimed for the community on Poynter.
Freelance journalist David Appell repeated the experiment successfully when he asked readers of his blog to support him in investigating a sugar lobbying group (Bowman and Willis, 2003), while Talking Points Memo also relied on reader donations for its continuing existence before BlogAds allowed Josh Marshall to fund his operation through advertising (McDermott, 2007).