The New Republic

The redesigned issue, page by page. (Credit: the New Republic)

The (new) New Republic: How the magazine’s bosses are building a company around ‘novel solutions’

It’s been more than eight months since Gabriel Snyder penned a note to readers upon ascending to the editorship of the New Republic amid one of the most tumultuous periods in the history of the century-old magazine.

His predecessor, Franklin Foer, resigned upon learning that owner Chris Hughes had already selected a replacement editor to work with CEO Guy Vidra to refashion the magazine into a digital media company. The bulk of the staff, including most of the masthead, followed Foer out the door. Each headline about the drama was more apocalyptic than the last (“The incredible imploding New Republic,” read one), and they became so plentiful that the Awl devoted a listicle to ranking 40 of them.

But in his note, Snyder sought to put the sudden and tempestuous changes into context by invoking the magazine’s long history of reinvention. Read more

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freelancer-signing

Indemnity clauses leave freelancers open to lawsuits

Forbes contributor Dolia Estevez is on her own.

Two years ago, Estevez identified a former spokesperson for Mexican president Felipe Calderon as one of the “10 most corrupt Mexicans of 2013” in a story she wrote on the Forbes website.  The spokesperson sued Forbes and Estevez under New York law.

The claims were various: one for defamation, against Forbes and Estevez together; one for intentional infliction of emotional distress, against Estevez only; and two for interference with business relations, against Estevez only. The spokesperson demanded money damages.

Instead of defending its contributor, as it would have if she were a staff writer, Forbes told Estevez she was on her own, invoking a provision of its standard freelance contract stating that web writers are “responsible for any legal claims arising” from their work. Read more

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Steven Brill says Chris Hughes is ‘not a man of his word’

Brill. (AP Image)

Brill. (AP Image)

The New York Observer

Steven Brill sat down with The New York Observer last week to talk about a wide variety of media issues, including his new, tantalizingly undefined project with former New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson. While he was at it, he shared his less-than-flattering opinion of Chris Hughes, the owner of The New Republic.

Brill’s falling-out with Hughes dates back to 2012, when Hughes, who had just acquired the magazine, met with Brill and bought, sight unseen, his magnum opus on health care costs, promising that it would grace the cover of the relaunch issue.

I went home and told my wife that I was going to do that health care thing for The New Republic. She said, “God, are you a schmuck.

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The New Republic and The Marshall Project go on a ‘blind date’

The New Republic and The Marshall Project on Friday jointly published “Inexcusable Absences,” a reported look at the legal questions surrounding school attendance laws.

The article is the first collaboration between The New Republic and The Marshall Project, a relatively young nonprofit news organization dedicated to criminal justice reporting. For The Marshall Project, the collaboration is a “blind date” of sorts, an experiment working with a magazine that has been remade in recent months, Marshall Project Editor-in-Chief Bill Keller wrote to Poynter.

“TNR is kind of a startup — I guess I should say a restartup — so we don’t know exactly what kind of magazine it will turn out to be, and what kind of audience it will have when it’s settled,” Keller said. “I’m a long time reader of TNR, dating back to Michael Kinsley’s heyday, and I’m curious to see whether the new, post-trauma version will live up to the tradition. Read more

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Career Beat: Noam Scheiber named labor reporter at The New York Times

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Noam Scheiber is now covering labor at The New York Times. Previously, he was a senior editor at The New Republic. (Politico)
  • Rachel Van Dongen will “lead a new initiative” at The Washington Post’s national desk. Previously, she was a deputy managing editor at Politico. (Poynter)
  • Claudia Wallis is now managing editor at Scientific American Mind. Previously, she was associate dean of strategic communications at Columbia University. (Mediabistro)

Job of the day: The Associated Press is looking for an immigration reporter. Get your résumés in! (Journalism Jobs)

Send Ben your job moves: bmullin@poynter.org Read more

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Career Beat: Julia Ioffe joins The New York Times Magazine

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Julia Ioffe will be a contributing writer to The New York Times Magazine. Previously, she was a senior editor of The New Republic. Jaime Fuller is joining New York magazine. She writes for The Fix blog at The Washington Post. Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig will be a staff writer at The New Republic. She is a Ph.D. student at Brown University. (Politico)
  • Betsy Andrews will be editor-at-large at Organic Life. Previously, she was an executive editor of Saveur magazine. Karen Shimizu will be a deputy editor at Organic Life. Previously, she was a senior editor at Saveur magazine. (Fishbowl NY)
  • Eric Engleman is now technology editor at Politico Pro’s Pro Technology. Previously, he was deputy editor there.
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Career Beat: Steve Korioth named news director at WVVA-TV

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Steve Korioth is now news director at WVVA in Bluefield, West Virginia. Previously, he was interim news director there. (Rick Gevers)
  • Theodore Ross is now features director at The New Republic. Previously, he was a freelance writer for The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic and Vice. (Poynter)
  • Kim Komenich is now an assistant professor of photojournalism at San Francisco State University. Previously, he was an assistant professor of new media studies at San Jose State University. (NPPA)

Job of the day: The Seattle Times is looking for a reporter. Get your résumés in! (Journalism Jobs)

Send Ben your job moves: bmullin@poynter.org Read more

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Here’s where all those New Republic staffers are going

The messy and public firing of New Republic editor Franklin Foer in December prompted a wave of resignations from staffers at the magazine who foreswore the leadership of incoming editor Gabriel Snyder.

A running tally of journalists who resigned in protest compiled by New Yorker correspondent Ryan Lizza included many from the upper ranks of the magazine. In Lizza’s in-depth documenting TNR’s implosion, it was clear that a tug-of-war over the company’s digital strategy between new management and the old guard was a source of much friction. Vidra wanted to build a “vertically integrated digital media company,” and staffers were worried that journalism would receive short shrift. Here’s an anonymous source in Lizza’s story:

The editors were hardly opposed to giving greater attention to digital media, but they came to believe that Hughes was losing interest in the actual content of T.N.R.’s journalism and cultural criticism.

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Career Beat: Audrey Cooper named EIC of San Francisco Chronicle

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Audrey Cooper is now editor-in-chief of the San Francisco Chronicle. Previously, she was managing editor there. (San Francisco Chronicle)
  • Ann Curry will develop a media startup funded by NBC Universal. Previously, she was a national and international correspondent at NBC News. (New York Times)
  • Steven Komarow has been named news director for Roll Call. Previously, he was an editor at Bloomberg. (PR Newswire)
  • Jason Zengerle is now a political correspondent at GQ. Previously, he was a senior editor at The New Republic. (Email)
  • Jennifer Henrichsen is a technology fellow at Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press. Previously, she was a research fellow at Columbia University’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism.
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Career Beat: Joe Germuska named Knight Lab interim director

Good morning! Here are some career updates from the journalism community:

  • Joe Germuska will be interim director at the Knight Lab. Previously, he was director of software engineering there. (Knight Lab)
  • Millie Tran is now a writer for BuzzFeed’s news apps team. Previously, she was editorial coordinator at the American Press Institute. (Email)
  • Noah Kotch is senior editor and director of video at The Washington Post. Previously, he was chief content officer at Vocativ. (Washington Post)
  • Suzette Moyer will be a senior designer at The Washington Post. Previously, she was creative director of Bay magazine at the Tampa Bay Times. Carey Jordan will be a designer at The Washington Post. Previously, she was art director at Washington City Paper. (Washington Post)
  • Josef Reyes will be creative director at Foreign Policy.
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