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The Daily Beast

The Daily Beast

The Daily Beast is an American news and opinion website focused on politics and pop culture. In a 2015 interview, former Editor-in-chief John Avlon described The Beast's editorial approach: "We seek out scoops, scandals, and stories about secret worlds; we love confronting bullies, bigots, and hypocrites." In 2018, Avlon described the Beast's "Strike Zone" as "politics, pop culture and power".[1]

*The Daily Beast*
Available inEnglish
Created byTina Brown
EditorNoah Shachtman
LaunchedOctober 6, 2008
Current statusActive


The Daily Beast began publishing on October 6, 2008. The Beast's founding editor was Tina Brown, a former editor of Vanity Fair*]]nd The New Yorker s well as the short-lived Talk magazine. Brown stepped down as editor in September 2013.[2] John Avlon, an American journalist and political commentator as well as a CNN contributor, was the site's editor-in-chief and managing director from 2013 to 2018.[3][4][5] The name of the site was taken from a fictional newspaper in Evelyn Waugh's novel Scoop.[6]

In 2010, The Daily Beast merged with the magazine Newsweek creating a combined company, The Newsweek Daily Beast Company. The merger ended in 2013, when Daily Beast owner IAC sold Newsweek to IBT Media, owner of the International Business Times.[7]

In September 2014, The Daily Beast reached a new record of 21 million unique visitors—a 60% year-over-year increase in readers, accompanied by a 300% increase in the overall size of its social media community.[8]

In May 2018 Avlon departed from the Beast to become full-time Senior Political Analyst and anchor at CNN. Avlon was succeeded by executive editor Noah Shachtman.[9]

In March 2017 former chief strategy and product officer Mike Dyer left for Intel.[10] In May 2017, Heather Dietrick was appointed president and publisher.[11]

Editorial stance

In an April 2018 interview, Avlon described the publication's political stance as "nonpartisan but not neutral": "what that means is we're going to hit both sides where appropriate, but we're not going for mythic moral equivalence on every issue."[1] In April 2017 Avlon discussed the organization's approach on the Poynter Institute's podcast saying, "We're not going to toe any partisan line."[13] In December 2017, NPR reported about The Daily Beast's bipartisan approach to its political reporting. Editor-in-Chief John Avlon began pairing reporters from both the right and left sides of the political spectrum to cover stories on the White House. In particular, they are using both Asawin Suebsaeng (formerly of Mother Jones) and Lachlan Markay (formerly of the Heritage Foundation) to file stories on the Trump Administration. Avlon commented about the approach saying, "We're nonpartisan, but not neutral. And so bringing these two perspectives together, I think, helps us stand out from the pack."[14]

Executive Editor Noah Shachtman describes the editorial style as "some of the spirit of the old school New York tabloid and match it with the pace of digital journalism."

Shachtman continues, "What we did is really put an emphasis on scoop, scoop, scoop...

That has really combined for what I think is the best read on the net."[1]

The Washington Post media Critic Erik Wemple described the Beast's direction, "Pound for pound, it is an impressive operation. As I see it, they do a few things well: they bang the phones, they don't always follow the same story everyone else is doing and they are fast."[1]

The illustrational style created by Director of Photography Sarah Rogers and used at the top of every article has been described as, "jaunty collage and pop-art illustrations".[1]


A feature of The Daily Beast is the "Cheat Sheet", billed as "must reads from all over". Published throughout the day, the Cheat Sheet offers a selection of articles from online news outlets on popular stories. The Cheat Sheet includes brief summaries of the article, and a link to read the full text of the article on the website of its provider.

After the launch, the site introduced additional sections, including a video Cheat Sheet and Book Beast.[18] The site frequently creates encyclopedic landing pages on topical subjects such as President Obama's inauguration, the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme, and the Iran uprising.[19] In 2014, The Daily Beast became majority mobile and released an iOS app, which Nieman Lab described as "the dawn of the quantified news reader".[20]


Contributors to the publication include notable writers and political activists such as:

  • Ayaan Hirsi Ali

  • Martin Amis

  • John Avlon

  • Mike Barnicle

  • Peter Beinart

  • Jamelle Bouie

  • Jimmy Breslin

  • Tina Brown

  • Christopher Buckley

  • Gordon Chang

  • Ron Christie

  • Eleanor Clift

  • Ana Marie Cox

  • Christopher Dickey

  • Diane Dimond

  • Kim Dozier

  • Joshua Dubois

  • Mark Ebner

  • Jon Favreau

  • David Frum

  • Leslie H. Gelb

  • Michelle Goldberg

  • Daniel Gross

  • Lloyd Grove

  • Shane Harris

  • Kyleanne Hunter[21]

  • Daniel Klaidman

  • Jackie Kucinich

  • Eli Lake

  • Bernard Henri Levy

  • Matt K. Lewis

  • Ira Madison III

  • Meghan McCain

  • Mark McKinnon

  • Michael Moynihan

  • Patricia Murphy

  • Maajid Nawaz

  • Olivia Nuzzi

  • Dean Obeidallah

  • P. J. O'Rourke

  • Kirsten Powers

  • Joy-Ann Reid

  • Josh Rogin

  • Nick Romeo

  • Erin Gloria Ryan

  • Noah Shachtman

  • Mimi Sheraton[22]

  • Harry Siegel

  • Stuart Stevens

  • Goldie Taylor

  • Michael Tomasky

  • Touré

  • Michael Weiss

  • Rick Wilson

In May 2017, Pulitzer Prize–winning national security reporter Spencer Ackerman left The Guardian and joined The Daily Beast.[23][24][25][26] When asked about the move Ackerman said, "The Daily Beast is the place to do the kind of journalism that matters most right now..."[27]

In June 2017, Huffington Post senior political editor Sam Stein announced he was joining The Daily Beast in the same capacity.[28]


In early June 2014, Capital New York re-published a memo by outgoing CEO Rhona Murphy, stating that The Daily Beast's average unique monthly visitors increased from 13.5 million in 2013 to more than 17 million in 2014.[29] By September 2014, the website reached a new record of 21 million unique visitors; it was a 60% year-over-year increase in readers, accompanied by a 300% increase in the overall size of its social media community.[30]

In 2015, Ken Doctor, a news analyst for Nieman Lab, reported that The Daily Beast is "one of the fastest-growing news and information sites year-over-year in the 'General News' category".[31]

During Avlon's leadership The Daily Beast doubled its traffic to 1.1 million readers a day and won over 17 awards for journalistic excellence. [3][33]

In a 2017 interview, actor George Clooney complimented the organization's development stating, "I really do love what you guys are doing over there, you've stepped up the game considerably from when it started, and it's fun to watch."[34]


The Daily Beast won a Webby Award for "Best News Site" in 2012 and 2013.[35] Also in 2012 John Avlon won National Society of Newspaper Columnists' award for best online column in 2012 for The Daily Beast.[36]

In March 2012, "Book Beast" won a National Magazine Award for Website Department, which "honors a department, channel or microsite".[37]

Anna Nemstova received the Courage in Journalism Award in 2015 from the International Women's Media Foundation.[35] Also that year, Michael Daly won with the National Society of Newspaper Columnists award in the category of Online, Blog, Multimedia – Over 100,000 Unique Visitors.[39]

In 2016, the Los Angeles Press Club nominated several of The Beast's writers including M. L. Nestel for Arts/Entertainment Investigative, Brandy Zadrozny and Ben Collins for best Celebrity Investigative, Malcolm Jones for best Obituary, Lizzie Crocker for Humor and Tim Teeman for Industry/ArtsHard News. Also nominated for best in field were Kevin Fallon for Industry/Arts Soft News and Melissa Leon for Industry/Arts Soft News.[40]

The Association of LGBTQ Journalists or NLGJA nominated both Tim Teeman 2016 Journalist of the Year and Heather Boerner Excellence in HIV/AIDS Coverage.[41] In 2017 NLGJA awarded Jay Michaelson for his coverage of GOP anti-LGBT legislation and Tim Teeman for reporting on ALS.[42]

In 2017, the website won three New York Press Club Journalism Awards in the internet publishing categories of Entertainment News, Crime Reporting and Travel Reporting.[43] In December, the Los Angeles Press Club's National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards announced the platform had won 4 awards for 2017 reporting including investigative articles about the Nate Parker rape case, comic Bob Smith's struggle with ALS, and remembering Bill Paxton.[44]

In 2018, the trade magazine Digiday awarded the Beast's Cheet Sheet for best email newsletter.[45]

Beast Books

In September 2009, The Daily Beast launched a publishing initiative entitled "Beast Books" that will produce books by Beast writers on an accelerated publishing schedule.[46] The first book published by Beast Books was John Avlon's Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America.[47]

In January 2011 they published Stephen L. Carter's The Violence of Peace: America's Wars in the Age of Obama.[48] Also in 2011 Beast Books published Nobel Peace Prize winner Leymah Gbowee's memoir, Mighty Be Our Powers.[49][50]



In February 2010, Jack Shafer of Slate magazine claimed that the chief investigative reporter for The Daily Beast, Gerald Posner, had plagiarised five sentences from an article published by the Miami Herald. Shafer also discovered that Posner had plagiarized content from a Miami Herald blog, a Miami Herald editorial, Texas Lawyer magazine and a health care journalism blog.[51][52] Posner was subsequently dismissed from The Daily Beast following an internal review.[53]

Taliban denouncement

A 2013 article about the Taliban seeking peaceful negotiations in Afghanistan prompted a direct response from the organization. The Taliban denounced the article as false and claimed The Daily Beast violated the basic principles of journalism.[54][55]

Nico Hines' 2016 Olympics article

On August 11, 2016, The Daily Beast published an article titled "I Got Three Grindr Dates in an Hour in the Olympic Village", written by Nico Hines, the site's London editor, who was assigned to cover the Olympic Games.[56][57] Hines, a heterosexual married man, signed up for several gay and straight dating apps, including Tinder, Bumble and Grindr, and documented his experiences in the Olympic Village. While not specifically naming names, Hines provided enough detail in the article to identify individual athletes, leading to widespread criticism that this information could be used against closeted gay athletes, especially those living in repressive countries.[58] Facing intense backlash online,[59][60][61][62] The Daily Beast edited the piece to remove details that could allow athletes to be identified, and editor in chief John Avlon added a lengthy editor's note. Criticism challenging the value of the piece continued,[63] and The Daily Beast eventually removed the article altogether and issued an apology.[64] In March 2017, Hines issued a formal apology for his actions, and it was announced by the website's editor Hines would be returning to The Daily Beast "following a lengthy period of intense reflection".[57][65]

Andrew M. Seaman, ethics committee chair for the Society of Professional Journalists, called the article "journalistic trash, unethical and dangerous".[66] The National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association stated "The reporting was unethical, extremely careless of individual privacy and potentially dangerous to the athletes".[67] Vince Gonzales, professor of professional practice at USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism wrote "I think this borders on journalistic malpractice".[67] The president of GLAAD, Sarah Kate Ellis, wrote "How this reporter thought it was OK—or that somehow it was in the public's interest—to write about his deceitful encounters with these men reflects a complete lack of judgment and disregard for basic decency, not to mention the ethics of journalism".[67]


In June 2019, The Daily Beast reporter Kevin Poulsen was accused of doxing Shawn Brooks, a 34-year-old Trump supporter living in the Bronx, when Poulsen revealed his identity in an article published on June 1, 2019 for being the alleged creator and disseminator of a fake video, which showed Nancy Pelosi speaking in a slurred manner.[68][69][70] Hours after being posted on May 22, 2019, the fake video had been shared over 60,000 times on Facebook and had more than 4 million views.[69][71] The fake video also spread to Twitter and YouTube, but was taken down on YouTube after the video was shown to be fake.[71] As of June 4, 2019, the fake video on Facebook had been removed.[72]

The Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald criticized The Daily Beast for revealing Brooks' identity, saying on Twitter it was "repellent to unleash the resources of a major news outlet on an obscure, anonymous, powerless, quasi-unemployed citizen for the crime of trivially mocking the most powerful political leaders".[69][70] Huffington Post and New York contributor Yashar Ali also criticized The Daily Beast for revealing Brooks' identity, saying it "sets a really bad precedent when a private citizen has their identity publicly revealed simply because they made a video of a politician appearing to be drunk".[68][69] The Daily Wire editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro said on Laura Ingraham's The Ingraham Angle on June 3 that "My impression was that if you are posting anonymously on Facebook, then it's not really within Facebook's purvey to start handing that information to media outlets, but I guess that isn't true".[73]

Other journalists who criticized The Daily Beast include freelance journalist and former The Young Turks journalist Michael Tracey, who said on Twitter that "No one on the planet ever thought "disinformation is the purview of Russia alone" other than self-aggrandizing, sleazy, click-chasing Daily Beast journalists", and media editor for TheWrap Jon Levine, who called the article a "hit job over a joke video that happened to go viral".[69][70]

When The Daily Beast editor Noah Shachtman was asked about these criticisms by CNN media reporter Brian Stelter on his "Reliable Sources" show on June 2, 2019, Shachtman defended the article, noting that the fake video had reached "the highest levels of power, with Rudy Giuliani himself tweeting it out" and therefore, according to Shachtman, it was worth identifying the creator of the fake video.[69]

In response, Shawn Brooks denied creating the fake video, despite admitting to being one of the administrators of the group Politics WatchDog who had originally posted the video and blamed a "female admin" of the group.[68][70][71] Brooks said that he would sue The Daily Beast and Poulsen for publishing "inaccurate trash", and created a GoFundMe page to raise money for legal costs, with a goal of raising $10,000.[70][71] As of the morning of June 3, 2019, he had raised more than $4,400.[70]


Citation Linkwww.mediaite.comMcLaughlin, Aidan (April 24, 2018). "The Daily Beast is Buzzing With Solid Scoops and An Editor Who Knows How to Spread The Word". Mediaite. Retrieved May 7, 2018. It doesn't hurt that the Trump presidency manages to sit squarely within what Avlon calls the Daily Beast's 'strike zone' of 'politics, pop culture and power'.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.theguardian.com"Tina Brown steps down after tumultuous tenure at Daily Beast" 11 September 2013, The Guardian
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkcnnpressroom.blogs.cnn.com"John Avlon Joins CNN Full Time as Senior Political Analyst, with Regular Daily Presence on New Day" (Press release). CNN Press Room. May 24, 2018. Retrieved June 3, 2018. Most recently, Avlon was Editor-in-Chief of The Daily Beast since 2013, succeeding the site's founder Tina Brown. Under his leadership, The Daily Beast more than doubled its traffic to 1.1 million readers a day, with the highest engagement of any digital first news site while winning 17 awards for journalistic excellence. He first joined The Daily Beast as a columnist one month after its launch, in November of 2008, and rose through the ranks as political editor, executive editor and managing director.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkiac.com"John Avlon - IAC Profile". IAC. Retrieved June 26, 2017. John Avlon is Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of The Daily Beast.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linknypost.com"Daily Beast promotes Avlon to editor-in-chief", 17 January 2014, New York Post
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linknymag.com"Tina Brown Resurrects Waugh's 'Daily Beast'", 7 August 2008, New York
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linknymag.com"IAC Found Someone to Buy Zombie Newsweek". New York. August 3, 2013.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.politico.comHadas Gold (October 1, 2014). "One year after Tina Brown exit, Daily Beast traffic surges". Politico.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.washingtonpost.comWemple, Erik (May 24, 2018). "Big changes at the Daily Beast: EIC John Avlon to CNN; Noah Shachtman to replace him". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 3, 2018. Shachtman's imperative comes from new heights, too. He is progressing from executive editor of the Daily Beast to editor in chief, a position vacated by John Avlon, the smooth-talking journo who splits his time between the Daily Beast and steady appearances on CNN—where Avlon will be moving full-time as a senior political analyst and anchor.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.politico.comGold, Hadas (March 3, 2017). "Daily Beast president leaving to join Intel". Politico.com. Retrieved June 7, 2017. Daily Beast President and Publisher Mike Dyer is leaving the company for a new position at technology firm Intel, he announced to staff on Friday.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkiac.com"The Daily Beast Appoints Heather Dietrick As President and Publisher". IAC. May 18, 2017. Retrieved June 7, 2017. Today, The Daily Beast announced the appointment of Heather Dietrick as President and Publisher, where she will oversee all company operations with an emphasis on growing The Daily Beast's journalistic influence and building out new revenue streams.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.poynter.orgMullin, Benjamin (April 24, 2017). "Why The Daily Beast doesn't publish Trump stories on Sunday mornings". Poynter Institute. Retrieved July 8, 2017. Our commitment is to be nonpartisan but not neutral ... We're going to hit both sides where appropriate. We're not going to toe any partisan line. We're going to have a range of columnists, from liberal to libertarian. But we're also not going to pretend there's a mythic moral equivalence between candidates or on any given issue. For me, the key quote for our times is actually an older quote from Daniel Patrick Moynihan who said that everyone's entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.npr.orgFolkenflik, Dave (December 26, 2017). "Daily Beast Editor-In-Chief Says Unusual Reporter Pairing Is Behind Latest Success". All Things Considered. National Public Radio. Retrieved January 5, 2018.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.mediabistro.com"Tina Brown Talks About the Book Beast". Mediabistro.com. February 6, 2009. Retrieved May 30, 2010.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.thedailybeast.com"U.S. Open". The Daily Beast. Retrieved March 4, 2010.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.niemanlab.orgThe Newsonomics of the Newly Quantified, Gamified News Reader Nieman Lab 4 December 2014
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.thedailybeast.comPlenzler, Craig Tucker|Kyleanne Hunter|Joe (July 15, 2017). "The NRA Has Entered the Province of Cowards". The Daily Beast. Retrieved August 11, 2018.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.cision.comMedia Research, Cision (July 22, 2016). "The Daily Beast Adds Drink + Food Vertical". cision.com. Cision. Retrieved September 28, 2017. Rounding out the staff is Mimi Sheraton, another columnist covering food, travel and restaurants.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.theguardian.com"Spencer Ackerman Profile". The Guardian. Retrieved June 26, 2017. Spencer Ackerman was the national security editor for Guardian US. Ackerman was part of the Guardian team that won the 2014 Pulitzer prize for public service journalism. A former senior writer for Wired, he won the 2012 National Magazine Award for digital reporting.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM
Citation Linkwww.theguardian.comPilkington, Ed (April 14, 2014). "Guardian and Washington Post win Pulitzer prize for NSA revelations". The Guardian. Retrieved June 26, 2017. Others on the team of journalists included Spencer Ackerman, James Ball, David Blishen, Gabriel Dance, Julian Borger, Nick Davies, David Leigh and Dominic Rushe. In Australia the editor was Katharine Viner and the reporter Lenore Taylor.
Sep 28, 2019, 12:27 AM