NEW YORK — Owen Thomas, who is finishing up as editor Valleywag, is heading to NBC to head up editorial operations for NBC Local in the Bay Area, one of several regional hubs created by NBC, it was announced today. (Press release below.)
Earlier today, David and I went to 30 Rock to interview Owen's new boss Brian Buchwald. Brian told us that Owen has "great sources, a voice and point of view." We agree.
We will publishing a bigger story about NBC Local and a number of developments. But, in the meantime, congrats, Owen.
Andy Plesser, Executive Producer
THOMAS NAMED EDITORIAL DIRECTOR FOR NBC BAY AREA'S DIGITAL
San Francisco, CA-May 14,
2009– In a move signaling NBC's dedication to transforming its local strategy
by recruiting top digital talent, Susan Sullivan, NBC Bay Area's VP of News,
announced today her appointment of Owen Thomas as Editorial Director for NBC Bay
Area's digital efforts, effective May 26th. Thomas will also report to Gregory
Gittrich, VP of Content and Editor-in-Chief, NBC Local Integrated
ValleyThomas, a 14-year veteran of
online media, will oversee the local digital content efforts in the Bay Area,
including the recently launched website for the region, nbcbayarea.com, as well
as mobile applications and syndicated offerings. No longer an
extension of the on-air newscasts, nbcbayarea.com features local
commentary, analysis, lifestyle coverage, news, and information created by local
contributors, blogs, online publications, print media,
and the television station to capture the pulse of
"Owen joins NBC Local Media
with a well-versed background in a variety of digital platforms. He has an
impressive track record of increasing web traffic and transforming digital
sites, and I am confident he is the right person to continue building on our
digital momentum," said Sullivan.
Thomas joins the NBC Local
Media Group from Gawker Media, where he served as
Managing Editor of Valleywag, the company's 24/7
online publication about technology and business, since 2007. During his tenure,
Thomas worked to reinvent and expand the site, quadrupling its monthly traffic
from 1.5 million pageviews to 6.5 million pageviews.
Prior to that, Thomas held
several positions of increasing responsibility at Time Inc. from 1999 through
2007, culminating with his position as Online Editor at Business 2.0. There, he
launched a network of 16 staff blogs and worked to
increase the site's monthly traffic from 2 million to 19 million pageviews.
Earlier, Thomas worked as an
online reporter and copy editor for Red Herring from May 1997 to June 1999,
where he covered startups, venture capital, and the technology industry. He
also worked at Suck.com, Wired's groundbreaking online
publication, which has been cited by many as an inspiration for today's blogosphere. Thomas began his career in 1995 as an
Electronic Publishing Fellow at Mother Jones, the first general-interest
magazine to go online.
Thomas graduated from the University of Chicago with a degree in
East Asian Languages and Civilizations. He currently resides in San Francisco.
About NBC Local
NBC Local Media is comprised
of ten NBC owned-and-operated television stations reaching 27% of US TV
households; the NBC Everywhere operation focusing on the growing Out of Home
digital market; LX.TV, a content production company that produces lifestyle and
cultural programming; Skycastle Entertainment, an
award-winning entertainment marketing and promotion company; and ten
locally-focused websites providing news, entertainment and information for true
city insiders. Together, the NBC Local Media properties distribute NBC
Universal content and produce local content for broadcast television, broadband
networks, digital channels and numerous media outlets outside of the home. NBC
Local Media is a division of NBC Universal.