Medium Spins Off Matter Online Magazine as ‘Incubator’ Studio

The self-publishing site says its award-winning digital magazine will be an online publishing equivalent to HBO or Amazon Studios

Online self-publishing company Medium is spinning out Matter, its award-winning online magazine unit, as an “incubator” called Matter Studios.

“It’s not a website. Matter won’t even be a publication, not anymore, or a publisher, not precisely. We’ve been describing it as sort of a studio and sort of an incubator,” Mark Lotto, Matter’s editor in chief, said in a letter posted Monday on — appropriately — Medium.

He described it as the online magazine equivalent to HBO and Amazon Studios for TV content.

Twitter co-founder Ev Williams , who is co-founder and CEO of Medium, will be Matter’s chairman and owner. Lotto and Hillary Frey will be the new enterprise’s chief creative officers, and he counted of a list of advisers, including former MTV president Stephan Friedman and Fisher Stevens, the documentary filmmaker who won an Oscar in 2010 for coproducing “The Cove.”

Williams is funding an initial seven-figure investment in Matter, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The new studio will hunt for “creators who are finding themselves constrained inside even the most forward-thinking media companies,” and provide them with financial and creative support to develop content, be it multiplatform digital journalism, podcasts, books, live events or streaming film, TV and video.

The post said Matter Studios make emphasize giving the projects enough distribution to build sustainable business models for them, which will be followed by further investment and resources to set them up as media properties on their own.

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