Friday, January 8, 2010

Carlson Launches Right’s Answer to HuffPost

Four months later he officially announced plans to launch a news site “along the lines of The Huffington Post” with an ideology “not in sync with the current program.” When he talked with TWI on Wednesday, Carlson suggested that the desire for news like that, and the potential to break big stories, was greater than ever. “When was the last time you saw, on television, a straight explanation of what’s in the competing House and Senate health care bills?” Carlson asked. “What’s in them? People want to know that!” In the time between that announcement and next week’s debut, Carlson and his partner Neil Patel — a former aide to Dick Cheney — raised money, scouted out staff (”we didn’t ask about ideology,” said Carlson) and held poker games at their original, grimier office in Washington’s Dupont Circle. A June launch date was pushed into autumn, and then pushed back again. The reason, explained Patel, was that “our aspirations kept growing.” “The size of the staff is much bigger than we started with,” Patel said. “We were very lucky to get the amount of money we did based, basically, on a PowerPoint.” As they convinced funders and advertisers that the online journalism model was viable — “two years ago, who would have thought that The Huffington Post would get more traffic than The Washington Post?” — they expanded the scale of the enterprise. When they go live, it will be with more than $3 million in start-up capital, enough to run the site for at least a more

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