Business Insider Editor and Columnist Josh Barro is the latest featured journalist to quit his media job to start both a newsletter and a podcast.
“I’m going independent in the new year, with a new podcast and a new newsletter! I’ll have the newsletter details after the holidays, but you can already sign up for the new podcast, Very Serious with Josh Barro, ”Barro wrote on Twitter.
Barro follows other star journalists like Bari Weiss, who left The New York Times a year ago and resurfaced with a Substack newsletter called Common Sense which in October had more than 100,000 subscribers, according to CNN Business.
Matt Taibbi, Glenn Greenwald, Matthew Yglesias and conservative commentator and author Andrew Sullivan are other examples of star journalists who quit their full-time media jobs to launch paid newsletters on Substack.
Together, the Top 10 Substack Publishers are currently making over $ 20 million per year, and some of the top performers are each making over $ 1 million per year.
Substack aims to allow writers broad editorial freedom – as long as general company content guidelines are followed – while obtaining assistance in the event of legal threats. The 4-year-old company’s hands-off approach to moderating content is inherently different from social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter: Substack customers choose to pay for a newsletter or read it for free. Yet earlier this year the company came under fire after some users reported it was hosting and making advances to authors deemed anti-trans and anti-women. Some authors ultimately chose to leave Substack on the problem and migrate their work to competing platforms.