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Nate Silver Previews Site, Hits Politico (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
Nate Silver, the statistician who recently joined ESPN from The New York Times, previewed his new website on Friday and dished out some criticisms of the current journalism environment, much of it directed at Politico. Delivering the keynote address at this year’s Online News Association conference in Atlanta, Silver said the new fivethirtyeight.com will be free and will launch “very early next year.” “The idea is that it’s a Web product, first and foremost. I’m sure we’ll build out podcasts and video coverage over time, but really the core challenge is in identifying writers and journalists who have the right critical thinking ability,” Silver said. TheWrap Silver also took a few swipes at Politico, whose coverage of elections and politics he’s often criticized, calling it an example of what journalists shouldn’t do. A recent article assumed that correlation equaled causation, Silver said, in stating that the government shutdown lead to Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe’s upswing in the polls. TPM / LiveWire Silver said that the way in which the information was presented in the article, not the information itself, was the issue. “It was a fine theory, but instead it was stated as a fact when there was no proof of it whatsoever,” he added.