Nate Silver’s new FiveThirtyEight website launches
The new FiveThirtyEight launched today, now powered by ESPN and built on WordPress. The site is a return to its own URL for Nate Silver, who launched his original site almost six years to the day that the new site launched (in 2008).
Silver was employed by Baseball Prospectus when he began writing posts on the liberal website Daily Kos, writing on the pseudonym “Poblano”. One a couple months after starting to write there he launched the first version of FiveThirtyEight. In 2010 The New York Times came called and the blog moved onto the newspaper’s website where it eventually concentrated solely on politics, and elections, in particular. After the 2012 election, where Silver’s predictions were the source of much controversy on the right, but ended up being accurate in predicting all 50 states correctly, Silver announced his departure.
The new site is a completely different beast than both the old FiveThirtyEight and the NYT feature.
“The breadth of our coverage will be much clearer at this new version of FiveThirtyEight, which is launching Monday under the auspices of ESPN,” Silver wrote online. “We’ve expanded our staff from two full-time journalists to 20 and counting. Few of them will focus on politics exclusively; instead, our coverage will span five major subject areas — politics, economics, science, life and sports.”
The new site promises to be a young nerds paradise (none of those listed on the website look to be older than Silver, who is 36).
“I’m sure we’ll build out podcasts and video coverage over time, but really the core challenge is in identifying writers and journalists who have the right critical thinking ability,” Silver said last year when explaining the new, as yet to be launched, website. “You can train people in methods, you can train people to some extent in writing technique and reporting skills, but do you have that critical thinking ability to look at the data sets and ask good questions? That’s kind of what we love to do — provoke people with questions, not be flashy or listiclely, but have interesting topics each day that are handled in a smart way and, hopefully, inform people a little bit better.”