Laura Hazard Owen wrote another great post on Nieman Lab, this time closer to home. She featured Longreads, the member-driven journalism site Automattic acquired in 2014.
I learned a few things from this feature, including that Automattic is matching $3 for every dollar that comes in from memberships. They also now spend all revenue on journalism efforts, whereas prior to the acquisition they had to spend much more on technology and maintenance.
It’s a good feature of journalism done in a (more) sustainable manner. It still requires a benefactor for now, but I do think Longreads and publications like it has potential to be self-sustainable, as director Mark Armstrong notes in the piece.
In addition to Longreads editing and management, Mark and the Automattic editorial team juggle other Automattic writing, and some PR; they are a busy group.