Onward

Onward

: I just quit my job at Advance.net to do lots of new things — a damned career smorgasbord — all related to changing news and to citizens’ media:

: I’m going to work on content development About.com, on a consulting basis, working with Martin Nisenholtz at The New York Times Company, whom I’ve known and respected for more than 10 years now. What excites me today is the meeting of mainstream media and citizens’ media and About at The New York Times Company is just that. But this is more than an old-media property buying into new-media (as I first saw it); it’s more than smart diversification (which the news business needs). About.com can be a platform for distributed media and I’m eager to explore all the great things that will come of that. But first, I’m looking forward to working with the amazing army of About guides, who have created a great resource of content and service online. I’m doing this part-time, as a consultant, so I’ll be free to continue blogging and doing other things, including:

: I will act as editor in chief of a new news start-up founded by Upendra Shardanand (ex Firefly, Microsoft Passport, AOL, and Time Warner) and a sterling team. More than a year ago, when Upendra first described his idea to me, I lurched at it. I was so determined to work on this that I gave up plans to start my own blog company. The start-up remains in stealth mode — this is the first public mention of it — but you’ll hear more about it soon. (And we are, of course, hiring engineers.)

: I got a chance to write the new media curriculum for the new City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism, collaborating on it with Dean Stephen Shepard (former editor-in-chief of Business Week), Merrill Brown, Judy Watson of CUNY, and more faculty there. I will continue to work with CUNY as the school launches and I can’t wait until fall 2006, when the school welcomes the generation of students who will shape the future of news.

: I am hanging out my consulting shingle to take on a few good projects. The first: I’ll continue to work with Advance.net on a magazine/online assigment. I’ve joined a few advisory boards. And maybe I can even get paid for the occasional speech. I am now Buzzmachine LLC.

: I have a book I’m finally ready to start writing and I’m thinking about writing some of it here on this blog.

: And, of course, I will blog — blog more, I hope. Blogging has changed my career and opened all these doors. I’ve learned a tremendous amount (or think I have) about the future of the press thanks to the conversation I’ve had here with you all. So thank you. I will continue the conversation and continue learning and changing my old ideas about media until somebody pries my laptop off my cold, dead lap.

Because I’ll be working with the Times Company, I’ll usually refrain from blogging about their business and policies, just as I did when it came to Advance’s business at Conde Nast and its newspapers (apart from the occasional plug for hyperlocal… and I swear, I never fed Gawker any Conde elevator reports). In the interest of full disclosure, this is why I did not blog about (or answer a few interview requests regarding) The Times’ new TimesSelect premium service. So have I sold out to The Man? Of course, I have. I did that more than 30 years ago, when I went to work for my first newspaper. You should always judge what I say about big media in the context of fact that big media bought the suit I wear (and a damned nice suit it is, thank you).

Now allow me to say a few things about Advance.net and my boss, Steve Newhouse, who is a real visionary and strategic thinker in the press and new media. It’s because of Steve’s enthusiasm for community that we opened our newspaper-related services to interactivity more aggressively than any other publisher I know. I’m proud that a great staff at Advance — led by my friend and colleague from Entertainment Weekly, Peter Hauck — built the top news sites in every one of the company’s markets. I’m also glad that I got to work on the start of CondeNet’s Epicurious, Concierge, and Style with Rochelle Udell, Joan Feeney, and other creative editors. I have the highest respect for the Newhouse family and their company and I’m delighted that I’ll continue to work with them.

Thanks for indulging me my little bit of personal news. Now back to blogging….

  • Tim Windsor

    Congratulations Jeff!

  • LT

    good luck Jeff.
    LT

  • Wow. That is news…
    All the best as you go forth….

  • Eileen

    How fabulous for you, Jeff! 10,000 Congratulations and Best Wishes for all your exciting new endeavors. Here’s to new suits, new shingles, new LLC’s and more conversations..

  • Kate

    So, will About.com cease to be a compendium of misinformation by amateurs, then? I’ve only seen one writer there who actually knows her subject–Mary Solomon on thyroid disorders. The rest are a mixed bag of ignorance.

  • What great news! It’s a great direction for you, and it’s wonderful news for the Times. They’re lucky to have you on board.

  • brian

    Congrats, Jeff. And I hope some of us will be able to converse with you more freely now that you are an independent consultant (not that there is anything wrong with that!).

  • Jeff: Sounds like a fabulous adventure you’re about to embark upon. Best of luck – we’ll be watching and tagging along to see how it unfolds.

  • Jeff – Best of luck and congratulations on your new venture. Much of the reason I started my own blog was due to coming here and seeing the possibilities inherent in this medium. Keep up the great work.

  • Sounds like you have found the right pills to sleep less than 4 hours per night, with all the things you are set off to do :-). Congrats Jeff, and look forward to seeing you again soon.

  • Congratulations, Jeff!! Can’t wait to hear more about this startup.

  • Congrats & good luck, Jeff.

  • Jeff, keep moving mountains. Hope to meet you along the way amidst all your travels!
    Best,
    Ben Casnocha

  • Wonderful news. All best expectations for Advance.net, then.

  • Dexter Westbrook

    Mr. Jarvis,
    I would say Ditto, but that has its own baggage these days.
    What you’ll be doing sounds very exciting and intellectually refreshing.
    Good luck.

  • Best of luck!

  • Congrats and good luck! We can’t wait to see where NYT/About goes next…

  • Congrats and good luck! We can’t wait to see where NYT/About goes next…

  • Congratulations Jeff, totally looking forward to more of you and a free-er you!

  • Great news Jeff. Onward!

  • Tom

    Congratulations, Jeff!
    I wish you many successes and enough failures to keep you hungry and humble.
    Tom

  • Great news, Jeff. Already your vision and enthusiasm have done much to get blogging across to big media. I’d say keep us posted…but that’s a given. Congats. Ed

  • Congrats Jeff… although I’ll miss our occasional bumping into each other at Cosi. Much luck in your future endeavors… they look very exciting :)

  • Gratz on taking the new plunge, Jeff. Looks like you won’t be lacking for things to do… and remeber, we ALWAYS think there will be more time tomorrow for the things we didn’t have time for today!
    Seriously, this sounds fabulous for you. And modesty aside, since you became a A-Lister, your career moves ARE news…..

  • God bless you Jeff!

  • Good luck on your prospecting the gold-rush.

  • Cool, dude. And no, you haven’t sold out to da man…well, anymore than you were already sold out to the other da man. ; )

  • Good luck with the stealth venture, the best type.

  • Hey Jeff…that’s great news! All the best in your new endeavors. We’re still kicking around ideas for citizens journalism out here, and I want to thank you for the help you gave. Onward!

  • Well, I’m not afraid to say it. Ditto! :)
    Looking forward to seeing new blood pumped into About.com.

  • congrats jeff
    im sure this is a better move for you!

  • Tom

    Congratulations and best of luck, Jeff! We look forward to hearing all about your new adventures in media-land!

  • Jake

    So now you’re a full-time hypester eh?
    A classic case of jumping on a bandwagon without knowing what’s really going on. But we live in an age of dilettantes and lightweights. 15-second attention spans demand 15-second pundits and prognosticators. I can just see Gladwell writing a retrospective on this craze in a year or two…

  • daudder

    Congrats, and best of success. I visit your bog daily and appreciate your enthusiasm about new media; glad you’ll keep blogging!

  • What a country, eh? Congratulations on liberating yourself, Jeff. Now we’re entitled to raise our expectations of you, right?
    I can’t wait to see what you come up with in these various roles. Good luck, my friend.

  • Wow. That sounds like the 20-year roster of someone’s career – and you’re taking it on all at once. Mucho congratulations!
    And if all of this work drives you insane and you have a nervous breakdown…just don’t forget to blog it, k?

  • Neato! Good luck, Jeff.

  • Jeff:
    Congratulations and good luck. You’ve blazed quite a trail so far and I’m looking forward to watching the next act.
    Tom

  • Alright! ’bout time ;) Welcome to the no steenkin’ badges sector of the economy!

  • RK

    Please (if you haven’t seen this site already), please–look at this at least once in your life:
    whowilldietoday.blogspot.com

  • May your new endeavour prove profitable to your bank account without being a liability to your moral sense.
    I remember when About.com was known as the Mining Company. A collection of guides to information available on the Internet, along with links to further information. I haven’t visited in a good while, so I have nothing to say on the quality of the information currently available.
    I do have one bit of advice, encourage all to maintain a network with others in their field. So that they can keep up to date on matters.
    BTW, I am not the person to consult regarding roleplaying games. I am simply not that organized. (Something you’re no doubt aware of if you’ve read my blog. :) )

  • Good luck, Jeff. Buzzmachine LLC has a nice ring to it.

  • Wow! Congratulations and good luck. It’s good to know you’ll be keeping ’em honest.

  • Congrats, Jeff-good luck with all these new ventures.

  • Very exciting! Good luck! And congratulations!

  • Jeff,
    I think you’re a bit too old to join the army, but I guess as an independent contractor they will probably put you in the high tech section instead of asking you to do actual fighting.
    I wish you a lot of success.
    PS If you see Al Zarqawi, fire off a bullet for me.

  • Congrats Jeff! There is a lot of opportunity there for you to make a great difference. I’m looking forward to seeing what comes of your new work.

  • Congratulations, Jeff!
    Wishing you continued success,

  • Jeff, great moves, best of luck.

  • Congratulations and best of luck to you in all of these endeavors.

  • watcher

    We wonder how long these new ventures can contain your ego.

  • When a person is self-employed he has a bastard for a boss. Welcome to the world of paying Social Security tax twice–andrew

  • I’m sure your indefatigable energy level will lead to great success.
    Looking forward to all your new projects.
    BK

  • PJ

    Hey, congrats and best of luck on the new ventures. It’s been blogalicious here, and I’ll always remember the day you introduced us to the Iraqi bloggers. The rest, as they say, is history.

  • Darn, Jeff, my daughter Emily just started a two week freelance fact-checking gig at GQ. I was hoping she would meet you. Congratulations. See you in San Antonio. Aug. 9. at the Wake Up Call conference.

  • Good for you Jeff! Tell Martin I say hello.

  • Congratulations and the very best of luck, Jeff. Looks like you’ve got a heck of an interesting workload lined up. Looking forward to reading even more of your stuff in the near future.
    /m

  • Great news, Jeff. Congratulations. Alex.

  • tonynoboloney

    Good for you jeff, and like the others I wish you the best of luck in all your endevors. Just keep blogging. TONY

  • david

    Webster’s wants a picture of you for the “Peter Principle.”

  • And under “david” I find, “chickenshit anonymous snarking ass.” But that’s on Wikipedia. Webster’s is so old world.

  • David is smart enough to know he has a brain, but not smart enough to know how to use it.

  • So the rumours are true — congrats!

  • Jeff, Onward with the Revolution! your fan, osder