Chris Suellentrop, an editor at the New York Times Magazine, has joined Yahoo's network of news blogs, where he will become deputy editor starting August 8.
"We're very excited that Chris is coming on board to help manage and edit the most widely trafficked news blogs on the Web," said Chris Lehmann, editor of the blogs, which include The Lookout (national affairs), The Ticket (politics), The Envoy (foreign affairs) and the one you are reading now, The Cutline, which covers the media. The sites feed stories into a centralized general news blog called The Upshot.
"As a web-native journalist with a strong background in long-form magazine editing," Lehmann added, "Chris is ideally suited to guide the smart, fast-moving and ambitious reporting and analysis that the Upshot team has made its stock in trade. Plus, let the record show that he has an excellent first name."
If Suellentrop's name rings a bell, it should--he was the editor of last week's widely discussed Times Magazine essay in which Pulitzer-winning former Washington Post reporter Jose Antonio Vargas came out as an illegal immigrant. He also assigned and edited Mark Leibovich's April 2010 Times Magazine piece on Politico's Mike Allen, which won the National Magazine Award for profile writing last month.
So why's a guy with a coveted gig editing long-form magazine journalism tossing himself into the 24/7 churn of the blog cycle?
"The Internet's always been the most interesting thing in the world to me during my career," Suellentrop told The Cutline, which, along with its sister blogs, was launched last fall as part of a broader push at Yahoo for original reported content. "This isn't to say that the Times doesn't have an incredibly sophisticated website, but there's something fun about the idea of going back and being a pioneer again and sort of trying to figure this stuff out."
Likewise: "Online readers have a huge appetite for long-form journalism," Suellentrop said. "There's no reason Yahoo News can't swim in that pool."
Before joining the Times Magazine in January of 2009, Suellentrop, 36, was an editor on the Times' op-ed desk. He had previously worked as the Grey Lady's first blogger, launching The Opinionator in 2006. Prior to that he was a writer and editor at Slate, where he wrote a "proto-blog" about the 2000 presidential campaign. As for his long-form chops, Suellentrop has freelanced for Wired, New York magazine and various other outlets. He will keep a slot on the Times Magazine masthead as well.
"Chris has done a great job as the politics editor of the Times Magazine, and we're sorry to see him go," said editor Hugo Lindgren. "But it's an exciting new opportunity for him, and we're planning to keep him on as a contributing writer. So we don't have to pretend to be happy for him--we actually are."
In addition to the Upshot blogs, Yahoo also runs a popular sports blog network and is in the process of launching a stable of entertainment blogs with editors and writers including Courtney Reimer, Lindsay Robertson and Will Leitch. As of May, combined traffic across all of the sites clocked in at roughly 600 million pageviews.