Six journalists stand out as people who saw the future in online publishing before anyone else, started out on their own as have ended up with sizeable new media fortunes: These 6 people are: Josh Marshall, Ariana Huffington, Om Malik, Rafat Ali, Jason Calacanis and Nick Denton.
Josh Marshall - Polk-award winning journalist, founder of the Talking Points Memo site, started in 2000, famous breaking the US attorney scandal.
Om Malik - used to write for Business2 (now defunct) magazine. He started with the famous Gigaom (http://gigaom.com) blog and now owns a small network of blogs focused on the technology business.
Rafat Ali - who was an out-of-work journalist in 2002, started Paidcontent.org blog to cover the digital media business. He grew the ContextMedia network until the Guardian bought him out for $30 million in 2008.
Nick Denton - who once wrote for the Economist and FT, runs the famous Gawker network of around 10 blogs, some whom enjoy enormous amounts of traffic.
Ariana Huffington - author and columnist, founder of the Huffington Post, aggregator of liberal blogs, started in 2005, last funding round in November 2008 brought in $15 million
Finally, there is Jason Calacanis, who ran the Silicon Alley Reporter in the 90s, who started the WeblogsInc blog network, Engadget.com gadget blog is one the big blogs and the first to make a million dollars from Google Adsense advertising. Jason sold WeblogsInc to AOL for $25 million and is now on to his third media startup, Mahalo.com, a a human-edited search engine.
This is a great time to start your own new media projects. Times are lean. Ideally suited for starting a business. People will write for you for less than they used to a while ago. Go ahead and do your own thing.
Adapted from a short post on the Mediavidea blog.