Former employees of the Denver Post decided to leave their jobs due to layoffs and interference in the editorial process by the paper’s hedge-fund owners.
The new paper will be called The Colorado Sun, and the papers owners plan to utilize blockchain in order to help launch the paper. The Colorado Sun will partner with Civil Media Company, a startup from New York City that offers technology and crypto economics with the intention of releasing it to 1,000 publications nationwide by the end of this year. By the end of June alone, Civil will have created 13 newsrooms throughout the country.
Larry Ryckman, a former senior editor at the Denver daily will become the editor of The Colorado Sun. Ryckman has a team of five former post employees that will take up jobs as reporters, which include Kevin Simpson, John Ingold, Tamara Chuang, Jennifer Brown and Jason Blevins. Ryckman has also hired two senior editors for the new paper, Eric Lubbers and Dana Coffield.
The editor, Ryckman and one of the Sun’s new senior editors Coffield resigned from the Denver Post in May as they saw the people who work at the paper lose significant morale because of changes the papers New York hedge fund, Alden Capital made to the newsroom. Alden took control of the paper in 2013 after acquiring the Denver Post’s parent company, MediaNews Group who went bankrupt. According to Ryckman, “none of us wanted to continue dismantling the Denver Post newsroom.”
The new publication will have a conventional website whose data will be stored permanently into the secure digital ledger or blockchain. The expenses of the news outlet will be temporarily covered by a grant from the Civil Media Company, whose sole investor is Joseph Lubin’s company ConsenSys. ConsenSys is a Brooklyn-based blockchain software company. Joseph Lubin is also a co-founder of the virtual currency Ethereum.
Civil Media Company eventually plans to unveil a new token this summer called CVL. Those who purchase CVL tokens will have voting “shares” or tokens to determine whether projects hosted by Civil meet the companies journalistic standards, as outline in the companies constitution.
The Colorado Sun will have a finite amount of time to make the operation profitable as when the grant money runs out, it will be up to Ryckman and his team to find revenue streams to keep the paper afloat.