Nieman Foundation at Harvard
HOME
          
LATEST STORY
With VuHaus, public music stations hope collaboration will bring in more listeners (and money) online
ABOUT                    SUBSCRIBE
March 21, 2016, 12:18 p.m.
LINK: medium.com  ➚   |   Posted by: Laura Hazard Owen   |   March 21, 2016

Matter, the longform publication that started out as a Kickstarter-funded journalism project before being acquired by Medium in 2013, is now moving out on its own: Matter editor-in-chief Mark Lotto announced Monday that what was once an online magazine is now “an independent media company called Matter Studios.”

The new Matter is a little tough to describe — as evinced by many ellipses- and “something“-filled tweets Monday — but here’s Lotto’s attempt, in part:

“Matter won’t even be a publication, not anymore, or a publisher, not precisely. We’ve been describing it as sort of a studio and sort of an incubator…

Matter will work with diverse, visionary, entrepreneurial voices—creators who are finding themselves constrained inside even the most forward-thinking media companies, who want to break out, who want to pioneer their own things.

We’re going to give these creators the financing and creative support to develop different media products under their own brands, from multiplatform digital journalism, to podcasts and books, to live events, to streaming film, TV, and video, to new things we haven’t thought of yet. We want stories and projects that are timely, daring, form-breaking, that have genuine social value and cover topics of consequence, that offer unique and underrepresented perspectives, that will bend the zeitgeist and change the culture.”

That’s still pretty vague, but Lotto said “we’ll be announcing an initial slate of creators and projects soon.”

The new Matter Studios is backed by Lotto; his wife, Hillary Frey, who was the executive editor at Fusion (Dodai Stewart will now step into that role); and Ev Williams, the cofounder and CEO of Medium and cofounder of Twitter, who will serve as Matter Studios’ chairman.

Matter Studios is “funded by an initial seven-figure investment by Mr. Williams,” The Wall Street Journal noted.

“The three of us have been talking about this for a long time — about how to do work of impact and fun outside a badly homogenized media environment and free of the preposterous pressures of traffic and scale; how to put the focus back on creators and their individuality, rather than on big brands getting bigger; how to push the boundaries of other platforms and formats as hard and as far as Matter’s pushed Medium,” Lotto wrote.

An advisory board also includes Medium editor Bobbie Johnson, who cofounded the original Kickstarter-ed Matter, and The New York Times’ Lydia Polgreen, among others.

Show tags Show comments / Leave a comment
 
Join the 15,000 who get the freshest future-of-journalism news in our daily email.
With VuHaus, public music stations hope collaboration will bring in more listeners (and money) online
“NPR’s capacity is really in news and the spoken word, and it’s very active on the cultural side, but not organized around music. There was a sense we either needed to work with each other or have a hard time competing at all.”
Could email newsletters be a partial solution to magazine companies’ problems? (Toronto Life thinks so)
Following the success of Twelve Thirty Six, Toronto Life is looking more closely at email newsletters as standalone products.
Coda Story, focused on deep dives around single themes, is now tackling a “post-truth” Eurasia
The platform is focusing on two major themes — disinformation campaigns in Eurasia and the migrant crisis in Germany — and focusing on larger character-driven narratives.