The Huffington Post is an American news website, content aggregator, and blog founded by Arianna Huffington, Kenneth Lerer, Andrew Breitbart, and Jonah Peretti, featuring columnists and various news sources. The site offers news, blogs, and original content, and covers politics, business, entertainment, environment, technology, popular media, lifestyle, culture, comedy, healthy living, women's interest, and local news.
The Huffington Post was launched on May 9, 2005, with the goal of going beyond the traditional liberal/left and conservative/right divide in American politics and news media. On February 7, 2011, AOL acquired the mass market Huffington Post for US$315 million, making Arianna Huffington editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post Media Group. In 2012, The Huffington Post was the first commercially run, United States digital media enterprise to win a Pulitzer Prize.
In July 2012, The Huffington Post was ranked #1 on the 15 Most Popular Political Sites list by eBizMBA Rank which bases its list off each site's Alexa Global Traffic Rank, and U.S. Traffic Rank from both Compete and Quantcast.
The Huffington Post was founded by Arianna Huffington in May 2005, and launched a few days later on May 9. The Huffington Post has an active community, with over one million comments made on the site each month. Prior to The Huffington Post, Huffington hosted a website called Ariannaonline.com. Her first foray into the Internet was a website called Resignation.com, which called for the resignation of President Bill Clinton and was a rallying place for conservatives opposing Clinton.
Local and international editions
In 2008, the site launched its first local version, HuffPost Chicago; HuffPost New York launched in June, 2009, HuffPost Denver launched on September 15, 2009, HuffPost Los Angeles launched on December 2, 2009, and HuffPost San Francisco, launched on July 12, 2011. HuffPost Detroit, launched on November 17, 2011. The most recent, HuffPost Miami, launched in November 2011.
The Huffington Post launched its first international edition, HuffPost Canada, on May 26, 2011. On the July 6, 2011 the Huffington Post UK launched its UK edition. On October 10, 2011, Huffington announced a deal with Le Monde and Les Nouvelles Editions Indépendantes for a French language, France-targeted edition, Le Huffington Post, to be launched by the end of 2011. On February 8, 2012, another French language edition was launched in the Canadian province of Quebec. International editions for Spain, Italy and Germany have been announced for 2012.
On May 1, 2012, a US-based Spanish language edition launched under the name HuffPost Voces, replacing AOL's Hispanic news platform, AOL Latino.
In addition to columns by Arianna Huffington and a core group of contributors such as John Conyers, Harry Shearer, Jeff Pollack, and Roy Sekoff, The Huffington Post has many bloggers—from politicians and celebrities to academics and policy experts—who contribute on a wide range of topics.
Celebrities are allowed to post blogs on the site, and a number have opted to do so over the years. In many cases, such as that of Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor, content is cross-posted among multiple sites.
The site also publishes columns by specialists in a wide range of fields such as Cenk Uygur, Anand Reddi on global health issues, Alice Waters on food, Harold Katz on dental health, Suzie Heumann on sex, Diane Ravitch on education, Frances Beinecke on climate change and the environment, Jacob M. Appel on ethics, Howard Steven Friedman on statistics and politics, Auren Hoffman on business and politics, Jon LaPook on medicine, Cara Santa Maria on science, and Iris Krasnow on marriage. It publishes scoops of current news stories and links to selected prominent news stories.
The Huffington Post's OffTheBus is a citizen-powered online news organization that is a collaboration between The Huffington Post, New York University (NYU), and Jay Rosen's NewAssignment.Net. The Huffington Post's FundRace is a website that tracks contributions to the presidential campaigns and includes a mapping feature that shows contributions broken down by city, neighborhood, and block.
UK bloggers include Alan McGee, Jody Thompson, Dom Joly, Dina Rickman, Malcolm Cowley, Alex Lee Thomson, Anna Hart, Martin Moore, Colin Pattison, Belinda Parmar, Rachel Preece and Labrinth.
In August 2006, The Huffington Post announced that SoftBank Capital would invest $5 million in the site, which had grown in popularity in only a year, to help expand it. Plans included hiring more staff to update the site 24 hours a day, hiring in-house reporters, and a multimedia team to do video reports. Alan Patricof's Greycroft Partners also invested. The news marked the site's "first round of venture capital funding."
The site now has invested in video blogging, with many of the site contributors contributing via video, and capturing clips in the media and posting them on the site.
In November 2008, The Huffington Post completed $15 million fundraising from investors, to finance expansion including more journalism and the provision of local news across the United States.
On February 7, 2011, AOL announced it would acquire The Huffington Post for US$315 million. As part of the deal Arianna Huffington became president and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post Media Group, including The Huffington Post and existing AOL properties Engadget, TechCrunch, Moviefone, MapQuest, Black Voices, PopEater, AOL Music, AOL Latino (now HuffPost Voces), AutoBlog, Patch, and StyleList.
Allegations of supporting pseudo-science
The Huffington Post has been criticized by several science bloggers, as well as online news sources, for including articles by supporters of alternative medicine and anti-vaccine activists and censoring rebuttals written by science bloggers before publishing.
Steven Novella, president of the New England Skeptical Society, criticized The Huffington Post for allowing homeopathy proponent Dana Ullman to have a blog there:
- "Dana Ullman, a notorious homeopathy apologist, actually has a regular blog over at HuffPo. For those of us who follow such things, the start of his blog there marked the point of no return for the Huffington Post – clearly the editors had decided to go the path of Saruman and 'abandon reason for madness.' They gave up any pretense of caring about scientific integrity and became a rag of pseudoscience."
In February 2011, Visual Art Source, which had previously been cross-posting material from its website, went on strike against The Huffington Post.
Since March 2011, the strike and the call to boycott The Huffington Post was joined and endorsed by the Huffington Post Union of Bloggers and Writers (HPUB), the National Writers Union (NWU) and the Newspaper Guild (TNG)
In April 2011, The Huffington Post was targeted with a multimillion dollar lawsuit filed in United States District Court in New York by Jonathan Tasini on behalf of thousands of uncompensated bloggers. The suit was dismissed with prejudice on March 30, 2012 by the court, holding that the bloggers had volunteered their services, their compensation being publication.
Although Arianna Huffington has stated that her paper is "not positioned ideologically in terms of how we cover the news," representatives of the Republican Party have indicated that they believe The Huffington Post's headline writers, bloggers, and commentators are hostile to their views and tend to negatively spin articles, and especially headlines, about Republican Party candidates. According to Michael Steel, press secretary for Republican Party House leader John Boehner, Republican aides "engage with liberal websites like The Huffington Post [anyway, if for] no other reason than [because] they drive a lot of cable coverage." Jon Bekken, journalism professor at Suffolk University, has cited the The Huffington Post as an example of an "advocacy newspaper."
- In 2012, The Huffington Post won the Pulitzer Prize in the category of national reporting for senior military correspondent David Wood's 10-part series about wounded veterans, Beyond the Battlefield.
- The Huffington Post is 2010 People's Voice Winner in the 14th Webby Awards and is the Winner in Lead411's New York City Hot 125. The Huffington Post lost the 2010 Webby Award jury prize for Best Political Blog to Truthdig.
- The Huffington Post was named second among the 25 Best Blogs of 2009 by Time.
- The Huffington Post won the 2006 and 2007 Webby Awards for Best Politics Blog.
- Huffington Post contributor Bennet Kelley was awarded the Los Angeles Press Club's 2007 Southern California Journalism Award for Online Commentary for political commentary published on the site.
- The Huffington Post is ranked the most powerful blog in the world by The Observer.
- The Huffington Post co-founder Arianna Huffington was named in 2009 as number 12 in Forbes' first ever list of the Most Influential Women In Media. The same year, she was ranked as number 42 in the Guardian's Top 100 in Media List.
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- ^ "Campaign Donors : Fundrace 2008 – Huffington Post". Fundrace.huffingtonpost.com. August 28, 2009. http://fundrace.huffingtonpost.com/. Retrieved September 2, 2009.
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- ^ 49th Southern California Journalism Award Winners
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