RSJ alumni launch The Logic

RSJ Alumni soft-launches The Logic: A News Outlet that Focuses on its Readers

 

By: Daniela Olariu, RSJ ’17

The innovation economy is rapidly changing and there is a new way to keep up with it. The Logic, a Canadian subscription news website that spotlights in-depth reporting on the innovation economy soft-launched last week.

David Skok, ’02 graduate of The Ryerson School of Journalism (RSJ) and ‘17 Ryerson Journalism Alumni Association (RJAA) Headliner is the CEO and Editor-in-Chief of the new outlet. “The gist of The Logic is that we believe people will pay for high-quality reporting and so our fundamental bet is that if we can hire the best reporters, give them the time, space and recourses they need to do their jobs, we will be helping to fulfill a journalistic mission,” he said. “It’s going to take time and we will have to earn peoples trust but I believe our reporting will do that.”

The team has been quietly working behind the scenes for five months building up sources and stories that the audience will view as high-value reporting. The journalism is being done by Skok, Sean Craig, Zane SchwartzCatherine McIntyreAmanda Roth, Julia Scott (who is a contributing editor based in San Francisco) and two interns.

Their articles are behind a paywall accessible to subscribers for $300 a year. About 70 percent of every subscription will go towards editorial, Skok said, adding he is determined to fund the site without advertising. “We want to be a news organization that serves our readers first and foremost,” Skok explains. “For almost 150 years, journalism has one way or another served its advertisers and not its readers. We want people to invest in us not just because of the coverage they’ll get, but because they can help us prove that a model works and that quality journalism can have a fighting chance.”

According to Skok’s welcome page, early subscribers will join “The Logic Council,” where they will have access to exclusive events and discussions.

Skok, who has been working as a senior editor and manager in digital for The Toronto Star, The Boston Globe and Global News, said his motivation behind The Logic is his passion for the fourth industrial revolution and simply living through it as a journalist. This is the current and developing environment in which technologies and trends such as robotics, virtual reality (VR), biotechnology, The Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) etc. are changing the way we live and work.

“I’ve lived it and my peers have lived it. For almost 20 years, I’ve worked in newsrooms where I’ve had to face the challenge of cost-cutting and layoffs … or I’ve been responsible for making those hard decisions as a result of the technological shifts in our world,” he said.

Skok sees the logic as a place where Canadians can have conversations about innovation, to share the successes and examine the struggles. “Canada has a bursting tech sector. We’re leading the world in artificial intelligence, cryptocurrency, agriculture innovation etc. and we have a moment in time here to really capture things,” he said. “I wouldn’t have started this if I didn’t believe that we could become another important journalistic voice in Canada.”