Today I sign off as editor and publisher of New Matilda.
As I wrote in a letter to our readers last week, it’s time for me to step back from NM after seven years as editor and almost four as publisher.
But I’m very pleased to be able to announce today that the website won’t be shutting down.
As of next week, New Matilda has a new owner and editor — journalist and former Tracker magazine editor, Chris Graham.
Chris stood out among a handful of potential successors because he has a clear vision for NM and a strong track record as an investigative journalist. He’s not planning to change the basic ingredients that make NM what it is — but he will be adding his own flavour, as well as upping the quota of Aboriginal affairs coverage.
Chris has worked in the media for more than two decades, he’s won a Walkley, been raided by the AFP over leaked cabinet documents, and launched two national publications focussing on Aboriginal issues — the National Indigenous Times and Tracker.
I think he’s a great fit for NM, and I’m confident you will too. Chris plans to start publishing next week. You’ll be hearing more from him on his plans for the site soon.
Before I finish up, I need to thank some of the people who have made NM possible over the last four years.
I owe a huge thank you to my staff — Catriona Menzies-Pike, Adam Brereton, Max Chalmers and Melanie Gillbank. These four have been the backbone of NM in recent years, and contributed so much of their time, energy and passion, often beyond what I could afford to pay them for.
I also need to thank the members of our team who were not paid at all — especially contributing editor Wendy Bacon, who has been a mentor and sounding board, our excellent economics myth-buster Ian McAuley, and regular cartoonist Lindsay Foyle.
Thanks to our regular contributors, including star recruit Ben Eltham, who had some of the best budget analysis in the country last night, Ben Pobjie, whose politically savvy satire was a perfect fit from day one, and NM’s talented ratbag of a cartoonist, Fiona Katauskas. It’s been great working with you.
NM has relied on the efforts of a small army of freelance journalists, writers and interns over the years — too many to name here — many of whom were not paid for their labour. Thank you for your excellent work and your trust in us.
I also need to acknowledge NM’s previous owners, editors and managers — especially founder John Menadue and my former boss Duncan Turpie. They put the building blocks in place that made NM what it is today.
As our main source of income, our paid subscribers have made the whole thing possible — thank you, and I hope you will continue to do so. All annual and monthly subscriptions will be carried over to the new business and you’ll receive information about this directly in coming weeks.
Last of all thanks to our readers and the huge network of people who support NM from afar — I’ve been overwhelmed with all the goodwill of the past fortnight. It’s easy to lose perspective when you’re chasing daily deadlines, but NM is obviously seen as a valuable part of the Australian media, and I’m so glad it won’t be going to the indy media scrapheap just yet.
I also won’t be disappearing from the independent media: I’m excited to be joining Crikey as editor later this month. All paid-up NM subscribers will be offered a heavily discounted Crikey sub in their inbox later this week, so make sure you come on over!
It’s been a pleasure working with team NM over the years.
Long live New Matilda xx
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