AOL isn’t nearly immune to the advertising recession that’s costing journalists jobs everywhere. Today, it reported ad revenues were down 20% in the last quarter.
But here’s the silver lining for media professionals caught in the same mire: AOL’s new boss, CEO Tim Armstrong, wants the company’s content business MediaGlow to be a Hearst or Time Inc for the 21st century.
MediaGlow already runs 70 online media properties — 27 of them are in Technorati’s top 80 — and wants to push that number to 100 in the next 12 months.
In other words, AOL — of all places, one might say — is on a hiring spree amidst the recession. For example, MediaGlow sports site FanHouse employs about 60 writers and just hired 10 more.
And, unlike some new media empires, MediaGlow isn’t only hiring young writers willing to forgo health insurance and full-time pay. They’re hiring people with experience.
Check out the bios for all the 22 people MediaGlow hired for its new site Politics Daily:
- Lynn Sweet is a PoliticsDaily.com columnist and blogger and Washington Bureau Chief of the Chicago Sun-Times. She is a regular guest on MSNBC, CNN and FOX News.
- Elizabeth Lev is an art historian and writer based in Rome, where all of her three children were born. She teaches at Duquesne University’s campus there and is the author of a forthcoming biography of Caterina Riario Sforza, an unsung heroine of the Italian Renaissance. (And Lev’s 10-part EWTN-TV series on the Vatican Museums – move over, Sister Wendy – would have been excellent even if she hadn’t done the whole thing in heels.)
- Helena Andrews, previously a reporter for the New York Times and Politico, is at work on her first book, Bitch is the New Black. She lives in Washington, D.C.
- Melinda Henneberger is the editor-in-chief of PoliticsDaily.com. She spent 10 years as a reporter for the New York Times, in the paper’s Washington and Rome bureaus, and is the author of If They Only Listened to Us: What Women Voters Want Politicians to Hear (2007, Simon & Schuster.) She also writes a regular column for Commonweal, the Catholic opinion journal, and lives in Glen Echo, Maryland, with her husband and their highly political 13-year-old twins. And as her Republican parents can sorrowfully attest, her son’s first utterance beyond ma-ma and da-da really was “algore.”
- Laura Lippman is a New York Times best-selling novelist whose 14th book, Life Sentences, was just released. She previously covered social services for her hometown paper, the Baltimore Sun.
- Donna Trussell is a poet, fiction writer, and former film critic. Her 2008 poetry collection, What’s Right about What’s Wrong, was published by Helicon Nine. She is a fifth-generation Texan and lives in Kansas City.
- Patricia Murphy is a Washington-based columnist for PoliticsDaily.com and the founder of Citizen Jane Politics, a non-partisan website for women. Previously, she worked on Capitol Hill and was executive editor of The American Interest. She’s a regular guest on CNN, Fox News and MSNBC.
- C.S. Manegold teaches journalism at Mount Holyoke and is the author of the forthcoming 10 Hills Farm: The Forgotten History of Slavery in the North. Previously, she was a reporter for The New York Times and Newsweek.
- Laura Miller, former Dallas mayor, led the opposition to the construction of 18 coal-fired power plants in her state, as depicted in the documentary film, “Fighting Goliath,” by Robert Redford. (Who she claims “insisted” on hugging her when they met. Right.) The New York Times once referred to Miller as “perhaps the nation’s only investigative reporter turned big-city mayor.” After leaving office in 2007, she joined Seattle-based Summit Power as an advocate for the company’s plan to build the country’s first IGCC clean-coal plant near Odessa.
- Alex Wagner, former editor of the music magazine The Fader, is the executive director of George Clooney’s Darfur foundation, Not on Our Watch. She lives in New York City.
- Ria Misra is a Washington-based science writer whose recent work has appeared on PBS, NPR and online for the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.
- Lynn Joyce Hunter is a child and family therapist who works with low-income families in Lexington, Kentucky, where her husband David is a professor of theology. She traces her initial negative reaction to the name of this blog to an unfortunate early experience with the singing group “Up with People,’ and additionally associates it with sexual dysfunction, for reasons she is still mulling.
- Judith Howard Ellis is the founder of Daybreak Lit, a Dallas-based company that offers social media consulting and writing and editing services to churches (and solvent non-believers, whose Inauguration shout-out from Obama she was fine with!) Previously, she was features editor and breaking news editor of the Denver Post, and served as the paper’s first innovation editor, heading efforts to improve newsroom operations
- Michelle Brafman is an award-winning D.C. filmmaker, fiction writer — and in another life, a competitive swimmer. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best New American Voices 2009, and has appeared in a number of journals and anthologies. She teaches creative writing at The George Washington University and lives in Glen Echo, Maryland, where she is, alas, the best writer on her street.
- Lori Adams Chabay holds a PhD in education and lives in Sweden with her husband, a scientist who studies how to best educate the public about science in general and climate change in particular.
- Alex Hughes is a recent Bates grad who spent the last two years working for the Obama campaign.
- Linda Kulman, who covers education for PoliticsDaily.com, is a former senior writer for U.S. News and World Report. She has collaborated on non-fiction books with Hillary Clinton, Nicholas Brady and two-time world boxing champion George Foreman.
- Donna Britt is a former columnist for the Washington Post and author of the forthcoming memoir, Brothers and Me.
- Bonnie Goldsteinhas been a private eye, Senate aide, coat check girl, Slate columnist, unwed mother, and investigative producer for ABC News. She lives in Washington, D.C. and is married to the novelist James Grady. They have two adult children, one of whom recently started the group, “Oh No, My mum’s on Facebook!”
- Mary C. Curtis, an NPR contributor based in Charlotte, N.C., was previously a writer and editor for The New York Times and the Charlotte Observer. A former Nieman fellow, she also contributes to the Nieman Watchdog political and media blog, and in 2004 was inducted into the Region IV National Association of Black Journalists Hall of Fame.
- Bonnie Erbe is a contributing editor at U.S. News and host of the PBS show To the Contrary.
- Mia Navarro is a New York Times reporter based in New York, where she covers the environment. She is also the author of Green Wedding.