Style & Assignment Guidelines

Hello freelance writers!

This is general information that applies to all assignments.

We’re on a mission!  We want to deliver content that helps cities to attract and retain talent and business investment, all while informing, entertaining and educating our readers.

Our primary audience is millennials - the largest group in the workforce today - as well as the younger people who are currently entering the workforce. With client-sponsored content programs, we often have secondary audiences that include other groups the clients have identified as targets for relocation, tourism and business investment.

Our tone is geared towards younger audiences with an emphasis on the relocation motivations of millennials - the largest group in the workforce today - and even younger audiences currently entering the workforce.

Our voice is bright, positive, diverse, informed, enthusiastic, trustworthy and conversational. We want to express how excited we are to tell you about a place, while at the same time presenting credible facts.

Here’s an example:

Before: The Doug Fir Lounge is a live music venue located in Portland, Ore., that features indie musicians.

After: One part cozy log cabin, one part spaceship, the Doug Fir’s chic decor is outshined by its impeccable acoustics and incredible indie lineup.

Want more examples of our style and voice?

Check out these Livability features:



  • Pay attention to web content dates.

  • Gather source contact information and verify with them any information you plan to use.

  • Do not lift copy verbatim from websites.


  • Writers represent JCI when making calls and conducting interviews. Please communicate with clients and sources professionally.

  • If you find a good source of photography on the topic, include info at the conclusion of your submitted assignment. If someone wants to submit a photo, please email the assigning editor, who will ensure it goes to creative.

  • Quotes should share an insight or opinion. Avoid vague quotes that do not offer context or meaning to the story, those that only restate facts that are already presented in the story and those that only state a fact or set of facts.


  • Copy edit your work carefully before submitting. Content should not have any grammatical or spelling errors.

  • Fact-check your work before submitting. Writers are expected to verify all information presented in content submitted and provide the sources of that verification when submitting copy.

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