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Posts Tagged ‘Vox Media’

NYU Adds Games Journalism Course

ChrisPlanteAvatarPolygon is a video games-focused website launched in 2010 in partnership with Vox Media. Among its attractively Avatar-ed content staff is co-founder and current editor-at-large Chris Plante. That’s his picture at right, the site’s equivalent of a Wall Street Journal hedcut.

This fall, Plante with have something else on his plate. Per an item by CJR staff writer Chris Ip, Plante will be teaching a class at NYU devoted to games journalism:

Students will read classic works like Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel’s The Elements of Journalism alongside a 1989 edition of Electronic Gaming Monthly. They will watch Page One, the documentary about the New York Times, and also host a livestream of themselves playing video games while providing commentary. One aim is to create a community of critics who treat gaming as a genre as deserving of artistic critique as film, music and literature..

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Felix Salmon: I Said ‘Masturbatory’, Not ‘Masturbation’

Same difference? On a freaky, spring Friday, it’s as good a question as any. It’s also the spark for one of today’s absolute must-reads.

JournalismFestLogoFrom the eighth annual International Journalism Festival in Perugia, Italy (April 30- May 4), the hosts tweeted that Fusion TV’s Felix Salmon had said, quote: “Breaking news is the most masturbating thing journalists do.” Salmon has followed with a minor correction (he said “masturbatory”, not “masturbating”) and a whole bunch of elaboration:

The full quote was captured by the FT’s John Burn-Murdoch: “Breaking news is the most masturbatory thing journalists do. The reader couldn’t give a flying f*ck who broke it.”

A bit of context, here… In the Q&A, I was asked about whether there was a problem with the fact that explanatory journalism doesn’t break news. In particular, I was asked about this quote, from James Ball, at The Guardian, writing about Vox and FiveThirtyEight:

‘Neither site truly aims to break news on the areas they cover, and therein lies a problem: Are readers meant to visit their favorite “regular” news sites, then hop by and see if the newcomers have anything to add (or debunk)? Neither FiveThirtyEight nor Vox has offered quite enough (yet) on any of their specialties to become the first stop.’

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Vox.com, Led by Ezra Klein, Goes Live

Vox Media’s Vox.com, a general news site being led by Ezra Klein, is now live. It’s an impressive looking site and certainly more advanced than what Klein was used to at The Washington Post. Appearance aside, the most notable thing about Vox is something called “Vox Cards.”

According to Klein, Melissa Bell and Matt Yglesias — the founders of Vox —  the site’s mission is to “explain the news,” and a big part of that is the Cards.

At any point when you’re reading an article, a Vox Card could be available through highlighted text. Clicking the text brings up the Card, which provides additional context to the article you’re currently reading. The Cards also exist on their own. For example, Vox’s first set of Cards includes topics such as Obamacare, The Ukraine Crisis and GM’s Recall Scandal.

The Cards are a cool feature, even if it might take some time getting used to them. They’re just not something you expect to see, which is why they might be key to Vox. Vox is attempting to make waves in an already crowded general news site market, if people accept and enjoy Cards, they’ll certainly help keep Vox afloat.

Morning Media Newsfeed: Flipboard Buys Zite | BBC3 to Go Online-Only | Egypt Tries AJ Staff

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CNN Sells Zite to Flipboard (CNNMoney)
CNN has sold its news reader app, Zite, to Flipboard, a social magazine application. As part of the deal, Flipboard has also teamed up with CNN to launch custom magazines for CNN shows anchored by Fareed Zakaria, Jake Tapper and John King. The deal could be valued as high as $60 million over time, taking into account future advertising revenue, said a source familiar with the deal. TVNewser The sale occurred less than three years after CNN acquired Zite for $20 million. CNN and Flipboard’s partnership will allow CNN to expand its mobile reach and take advantage of Flipboard’s technology and mobile sales strategy. Re/code Zite itself will shut down, but CNN says most of its 20 employees will go to work for Flipboard. Zite CEO Mark Johnson will not be joining them. Forbes / Jeff Bercovici The deal merges two apps that let users aggregate news stories from all over into a single magazine-like experience. Of the two, Flipboard has been considerably more successful: It’s currently ranked No. 5 among free iPad news apps in Apple’s App Store, while Zite is No. 39. Flipboard will absorb the machine-learning technology that Zite uses to personalize news feeds for its users. Mashable The move also divests CNN of one of its most high-profile acquisitions while putting it in front of Flipboard’s users, which according to Johnson number more than 100 million.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Vox Media Staffs Up | NYT May Print Woody Reply | CNN Latino Shut Down

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Washington Post‘s Brad Plumer, Sarah Kliff, Max Fisher Joining Ezra Klein’s Vox Venture (HuffPost)
The Washington Post‘s Brad Plumer and Sarah Kliff are joining Ezra Klein’s new venture to be launched with Vox Media, according to newsroom sources familiar with the plans. Plumer covers environmental policy issues for the Post‘s Wonkblog, which was run by Klein until his departure last month. Kliff reports on health care policy. Klein, Plumer and Kliff declined to comment, as did a Post spokeswoman. FishbowlDC Kliff made the announcement via Twitter: “So some news! I’m leaving the Washington Post to join Vox Media.” Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Nearly two weeks after Klein’s departure, the Post has yet to name a replacement editor for its Wonkblog page — a delay that casts doubt on the blog’s viability in the post-Klein era. It’s an unenviable position. Whoever the Post selects — provided they do select someone — will have to follow in Klein’s footsteps and compete with his new venture at Vox Media. Because Klein has taken the majority of the Wonkblog team with him, the new editor will inherit almost none of the existing staff. Washington City Paper / City Desk Editors say they will be looking for replacements for Plumer and Kliff “very soon.” Adam Taylor, who the Post hired last week from Business Insider, will be taking over for Fisher. Top editor Marty Baron said last week that the paper would be hiring as it increases its blogging and expands its magazine. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Klein’s total editorial staff is now 11.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Ezra Klein Joins Vox | Gmail Goes Down | Vargas Comes Clean

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Ezra Klein Is Joining Vox Media as Web Journalism Asserts Itself (NYT)
After a week of speculation, it turns out that Ezra Klein, the prolific creator of the Washington Post’s Wonkblog, will be going to Vox Media, the online home of SB Nation, a sports site, and The Verge, a fast-growing technology site. His change of address could be read as the latest parable of Old Media cluelessness — allowing a journalism asset to escape who will come back to haunt them — or as another instance of a star journalist cashing in on name-brand success. But it’s more complicated than that. FishbowlDC The new website, ominously named “Project X,” will be housed within the fast growing Vox Media empire. Vox is a small but potent little Web company that clearly hopes to make a play for mainstream appeal with the addition of Klein to its roster. FishbowlNY Matt Yglesias will serve as executive editor of the new Vox Media venture founded by Klein, FishbowlNY has learned. Slate’s prolific economics blogger announced last week that he would join Klein. Klein, unsurprisingly, now has the title of editor-in-chief. According to Klein’s post, Yglesias, along with Wonkblog veteran Melissa Bell, has been involved with the planning process since early last year. Capital New York Klein didn’t allow for much detail of what new publication would look like in his post on The Verge, but was clear that his team will look for a format to provide readers with more context for news stories as they develop. A general job posting for the site on Vox’s listings page provided some more hints. “We’ll need writers who are obsessively knowledgeable about their subjects to do that reporting and write those explainers — as well as ambitious feature pieces,” the posting read, before providing a more telling detail: “We’ll need coders and designers who can build the world’s first hybrid news site/encyclopedia.” BuzzFeed Klein: “We’re not trying to build a ‘super Wonkblog.’ If we were doing that we wouldn’t go through all this trouble. We intend to be incredibly good at policy and politics but also sports and science. We are trying to build a full news site and in a better and more useful way for our readers.”

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Racked Adds Feature Writer, Photographer

While the acquisition of the Curbed sites by Vox Media has received the lion’s share of media attention, there is also a lot going on at Racked, the fashion network that along with Eater was also part of the deal. Racked encompasses a national site and regional verticals for New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Chicago, Las Vegas and Los Angeles.

ChavieLieberThe national site, run out of an office in the East Village alongside the group that operates the New York vertical, is adding Chavie Lieber (pictured) as its first full-time feature writer. Photographer Driely Vieira meanwhile is being bumped up at the beginning of next month to Racked full-time status. She will contribute to both the New York and national sites.

Racked founder, national editor Leslie Price, who launched the site in 2007, is excited about these and other forthcoming changes. She is based out of Miami, where she returned this summer after helping oversee and grow the west coast end of Racked.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Vox Buys Curbed | 60 Minutes Apologizes | Onion Ends Print Edition

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Vox Media Buying Curbed.com Network of Sites (NYT)
Vox Media, a company with three strong digital brands, including the technology site The Verge, is adding to its portfolio. The company plans to announce on Monday that it is buying Curbed.com L.L.C., which runs three Web publications that deliver in-depth neighborhood coverage, with attitude, of real estate, dining and retailing. Fortune Fortune has learned that ambitious digital media startup Vox Media will acquire Curbed Network, a saucy trio of urban lifestyle and entertainment blogs, for a mix of cash and stock valued between $20-30 million. Though Curbed has just 5 million monthly unique visitors, the deal will help Vox Media grow its business in new categories, including home, food and style. Business Insider When asked why he’s interested in a local play like Curbed, which is published in 32 cities, Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff replied, “It’s not a local play. These are huge mainstream consumer categories: Food/dining, home/real estate, style/retail are among the most popular cable networks and TV shows, magazines… yet who really owns the categories from a digital media perspective, especially among rich young adults online?”

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