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Tech is Swallowing the Universe

New media mogul Jessica Lessin realized that tech stories were massively important -- yet wildly underreported. So she started a subscription-based publication, The Information, lined up top-notch reporters, and is changing the way we understand technology.

Check out this story about her, Maybe Information Doesn't Want to Be Free, in the New York Times. Among the takeaways:

  1. Many reporters focus on the wrong topics, such as "the number of cars sold, rather than the artificial intelligence and driver networks that threaten to make that number obsolete." The Information has chronicled everything from sexual harassment allegations among venture capitalists, to Google's flops to who holds the real power at Amazon.

  2. You don't have to litter your online publication with ads. According to Lessin, "quality stories breed quality subscribers." Hers pay $399 per year. The Times reports that Lessin expects sales to reach $20 million by the end of this year.

  3. Though the Times took a swipe at her for it (albeit a back-handed one, blaming "Valley underminers" for the criticism), Lessin funded her publication with her own money. As if that were a bad thing. She pays generously and doesn't spend more than the publication grosses. Sounds like a blueprint for a healthy tech venture.

Carol Dannhauser

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