Direct From the Blogger’s Mouth: Biggar Explains Why NewsLabs Bit It

About a month ago, Paul Biggar, who now works at Mozilla, promised he would write on his blog why NewsLabs, the company he co-founded, bit the dust.

Biggar came through as promised with a long missive that you can read on his blog.

Perhaps people outside of the Fourth Estate didn’t care much about the site, but the startup (later renamed NewsTilt) was of interest to us because it was born out of the Y Combinator camp and promised to help journalists build their brands online. The startup was one of the first companies that fit Y Combinator’s push to create a company that focused on the future of journalism.

NewsLabs crashed pretty quickly this year, however. Biggar (pictured) explains on his blog, which is interlaced with profanity in all the right places, that it was a news destination website.

“…but we very quickly ran out of news. We relied on journalists posting news, and they stopped posting because they largely no longer believed that NewsTilt was good for them. Journalists felt that they were writing for us, instead of writing for themselves, for their own brands. How could they feel anything else, since that’s the impression we gave them by the design of”

It’s uncertain how much Y Combinator pumped into the now-defunct site, but startups rarely raise any more than $20,000 each from the incubator.