TXT OUTLIER is an SMS service that delivers critical information for Detroiters and allows people to talk directly to a reporter at Outlier Media.


Use TXT OUTLIER to get housing, utilities and other essential information in Detroit automatically. You can also use the service to talk to an Outlier reporter directly about a question or issue you are having when you need other information. 

Messages are sent from the number 67485. Text “Detroit” to 67485 to use the service or sign up for updates below. 

Text “Detroit” to 67485 to get housing, utilities and other critical information on demand or to speak with an Outlier reporter directly. For occasional updates over text, share your number: 

Text “STOP” at any time to stop receiving messages. See our privacy policy >

Message and data rates may apply, and carriers are not liable for undelivered or delayed messages. People may receive up to four messages a month. You can always text “STOP” to unsubscribe and stop receiving messages from us, or “HELP” to chat with someone from our team. Read our privacy policy for more information about how we use your data.

Why we text the news

We reach more than 8,000 Detroiters each week through text messaging, providing valuable information about housing, utilities and more. Many ask for a reporter to follow up with them, allowing them to ask questions and us to find answers. 

We are in regular conversation with more Detroiters than newsrooms many times our size. We hope to equip people in our community to make important decisions to avoid evictions and tax foreclosure, determine the most cost-efficient energy resource for their households and protect their families.

Our individualized engagement has allowed thousands of residents to navigate or avoid eviction, foreclosure and utility shut-offs. These conversations drive our accountability and investigative work, leading to local policy changes and increased scrutiny of flawed systems.

Information focused on basic needs

Outlier conducts regular information needs assessments in Detroit by surveying residents through text messaging and analyzing data from United Way’s 211 service and other sources. These assessments identify the biggest challenges Detroiters are facing and shape our coverage accordingly. Read more about information needs