Ezra Klein, anchor of The Washington Post’s highly successful Wonkblog, announced yesterday evening that he and some colleagues will be launching a new explanatory journalism site at Vox Media, home to the Verge, SB Nation, Polygon, Curbed, Eater and Racked.
He wrote of Vox Media’s fabulous publishing platform, Chorus. He wrote of the limitations on old media. He wrote of the “world-class design and engineering team” at Vox. He didn’t mention that he was leaving The Post. He didn’t explain who Melissa Bell and Matthew Yglesias were (The Post’s director of platforms and Slate’s “Moneybox” columnist, respectively).
In other words, not enough detail for some commenters at the Verge. Commenter Tuan X wrote, “I’m not exactly sure what this article is about honestly & I feel alone in this sentiment. Can someone elaborate please.” Stickboy 42 joined in, “I agree. I’ve read it twice, and I can’t seem to see any actual information about what this announcement means.” Kayzee: “Glad I’m not the only one, I have no idea what’s going on. I’m also pretty uninterested in going on another news site. Oh well, good luck and [expletive]!” YozMan: “Its kinda ironic that an article announcing a new website that is going to focus on giving us context failed to do so (at least for most of the people reading the article, myself included).”
Sensing a trend, Klein himself jumped in: “This is fair! This article absolutely lacks some necessary context. OTOH, the necessary context is a site we haven’t built yet! Stay tuned!” Perhaps it’s all proof of what Klein was saying in the piece — that journalism hasn’t done a good enough job of “giving [people] the crucial contextual information necessary to understand what’s happened” — or that Klein is more thorough writing about health-care policy than about himself.