January 25, 2022

Ben Smith Is Leaving The Times for a Global News Start-Up

“The talent model for journalism is pretty broken,” he added. “Audiences feel really connected to the person writing the story or making the video. That’s a challenge for big institutions.”

In a tweet announcing his departure from Bloomberg, Justin Smith said he was leaving “to pursue a personal dream, and a market opportunity.”

In his column for The Times, Ben Smith wrote a number of major articles, including one about harassment and abuse of power allegations against the chief editor of Bild, one of Germany’s most powerful newspapers, which is owned by Axel Springer, a giant global media company.

His column raising questions about the business practices of Ozy Media and its founder, Carlos Watson, rocked a start-up that had claimed it had large online audiences.

“What makes Ben special is that he is a commentator who also deeply reports,” Dean Baquet, executive editor of the Times, said in a statement. “That’s a pretty rare combination in media writing today.”

At times, Mr. Smith was accused of having conflicts of interest while reporting on the media business, because he had stock in BuzzFeed when he joined The Times. In an interview, Mr. Smith said he had divested most of that stock.

Mr. Smith took over the media column at The Times from Jim Rutenberg. Before Mr. Rutenberg, the columnist position was held for years by David Carr, who died in 2015.

Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/04/business/ben-smith-new-york-times.html

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