As you may have already heard (or read), there's some activity going on in the world of Joshua Topolsky. Earlier this evening, David Carr published a piece in the New York Times about a new project that I'm embarking on... and I want to just say a few things about it.
Firstly: yes, this is happening. I've decided to join the team at SB Nation to build something brand new in the tech space. Now I know it might seem odd to some that I would be partnering with a sports publisher to build a technology news site, but that's only half the story. This isn't just about sports, or tech, or lone silos. What we will build together at SB Nation is a new media company -- buoyed by the absolutely incredible work SB Nation has already done in publishing -- and part of that new media company will be the as-yet-unnamed gadget and technology site that I'll be working over the next few months to create. When we launch (hopefully in the fall), I will be editor-in-chief of a property that I hope will inform, entertain, and engage fans of technology in whole new ways.
I should say that I wouldn't want to build something like this alone, and thankfully, I won't have to. I'll be joined by some very good friends at this new venture -- people like Nilay Patel, for instance.
Of course, the natural question I'm sure a lot of people have is: why SB Nation? The easy answer is that the people at SB Nation share my vision of what publishing looks like in the year 2011. They think that the technology used to create and distribute news on the web (and mobile) is as important as the people who are responsible for the content itself. And that's not just pillow talk -- SB Nation is actively evolving its tools and processes to meet the growing and changing needs of its vast editorial teams and their audience communities. They're building for the web as it is now. From the perspective of a journalist who also happens to be a huge nerd, that's a match made in heaven. SBN isn't just another media company pushing news out -- it's a testbed and lab for some of the newest and most interesting publishing tools I've ever seen. In short, I was blown away when I saw what kind of technology they're using to get news on their front page and engage audiences, and even more blown away when I started talking to them about what could come next.
But beyond the technology (and possibly more important than the technology), there's another factor here that's driving my decision. It's that SB Nation believes in real, independent journalism and the potential for new media to serve as an answer and antidote to big publishing houses and SEO spam -- a point we couldn't be more aligned on. This is a group of people that not only think independent media works, but are reaping the rewards of new publishing done right. As the fastest growing online sports publisher, they're seen as a source for credible and honest journalism, which is why industry stalwarts like Rob Neyer have recently joined their ranks (ranks which include hundreds of talented sports experts). This isn't tabloid page grabbing or content farming -- it's news and insight by and for a passionate and informed group of people. And that's exactly where I want to be.
So, what happens next? We get to work.
In the coming months I'm going to be laser focused on one thing: building the best tech site in the world -- and I would love to hear what you guys think the next phase in technology and gadget news should look like. Ping me with ideas, gripes, or even better -- come and work here! SB Nation is looking for new developers as we speak, and as we ramp up to launch, we'll be bringing on lots of talent to work both on the front page and behind the scenes.
I couldn't be more excited and enthusiastic about what we can build right now, and I can't wait to share what we're going to make with the rest of the world. The months ahead are going to be filled with lots of early mornings and sleepless nights, intense debates, triumphs, and trials -- and I can't wait.