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The site was launched in July 2009 by former Seattle Post-Intelligencer journalists. It has three full-time editorial employees, along with several contributors and interns, and it primarily syndicates its work to other news outlets, such as The Oregonian and SeattlePI.com.
Its planned $1.35 million first-year budget was intended to be funded by a variety of grants and donations from foundations, businesses, and individuals. Though almost none of that funding was in place at its founding, the site would ultimately receive grants from the Bullitt Foundation and the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation, and later from the Brainerd Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. In 2014, the site announced $200,000 in grants from three different foundations.
Topix is a network of aggregated local news and community forums. Topix was launched in 2004 in Palo Alto, Calif., by the founders of the Open Directory Project. Three newspaper companies — Gannett, Knight-Ridder, and the Tribune Co. — each bought a quarter of the company in 2005. The site claims about 125 million page…